When I visit Nottingham, which happens from time to time - usually about twice a year - I always go to Forbidden Planet on Friar Lane. It's one hell of a comic book store with hundreds of mangas, comic books and gadgets. There's absolutely everything you could wish for when it comes to comic. What's more they have "3 for 2" promotions for manga, which is basically why I always come back to Poland with some new stuff in my bag - in May I brought back ten books with me. :D
This time it's only one, though - Sakuran by Moyoko Anno. I didn't come across this title before, but the cover and the summary seemed appealing and since there was nothing in particular I wanted to buy at the time I decided to have it. I didn't have time to read it yet (this is happening again, I know...), but when I do I'll write something about my impressions. :)
I'll tell you a fairy tale. Once upon a time there was a girl who loved collecting manga. One day one of the publishers named June happened to announce their new title, which was "Hana wa saku ka". This made the girl cry out with joy, she loved the author and was overwhelmed to be able to buy their another title. But the time was passing by and the manga still wasn't published. One day the publisher declared that the release will be postponed with no known date. That pissed the girl off and she thought "Fuck you, June".
Yup, that's the short version of what I think about postponing publishing over and over without providing potential/future clients with any information. I already cancelled my orders for first and second volume of "Hana wa saku ka" from June, I'll buy Yumegari's edition, although I honestly hate them. Ugh.
Original title: イエロー, イエロー 2
English title: Yellow, Yellow 2
Author: Tateno Makoto
Genre: Yaoi, romance, drama, action
Green means go. Red means stop. Yellow signals danger.
To be honest, Yellow is one of the mangas I was hesitating since long ago if to buy or not. Eventually I decided I want it on my shelf and bought English omnibus edition published by June. This edition consists of two volumes instead of four, is in enlarged format and includes twenty-something color pages. Print's quality is good, I spotted one typo somewhere in the first volume, the translation is good and natural. I only wished the cover paper was a bit thicker, but it's the same as in other June's mangas and it doesn't really bother me.
Taki and Goh are "snatchers" - they track down cases of dealing drugs, guns etc. and snatch the goods away. But, let's be honest - there's no real criminal plot or anything, it's all just to show the relations, feelings and the bond between the protagonists. Not that it's a bad thing, but if you look for a serious action manga, it's not your thing, trust me.
The main story is slow paced and convincing, it's not a "Hey, I like you, let's go to bed" story. No, no, no. You can really see how the feelings develop and grow - and that's a great thing. Both Taki and Goh are really likeable, cute characters. They're handsome, intelligent, funny and have something they're great at (smells like fanservice, doesn't it?). I just don't get one thing <spoiler alert!> - why can't they both be seke? Ugh, I mean - they're each other's equals, they just ought to be sekes! Besides, Taki istn't really an uke type, now is he? In fact that's the only thing that bothers me about the whole story. Nevertheless, it's a great yaoi and Makoto Tateno did a really good job at both making the story and drawing.
Sequel stories, Yellow 2: Episode 1, 2 and 3, apart from being too short and too expensive (almost 7 bucks for about 60 pages), are a decent continuation of the story. As the title suggests, they really are just some episodes, but just as enjoyable as the main story. Unfortunately, the print is much worse than in omnibus edition. They're also smaller than omnibus volumes, their size fits the one of average "new" June's mangas - the ones without the dustcovers. In Japan there are four parts of the sequel (and it's ongoing), but as of today June has published only three of them.
To sum up - Yellow might not be one of the greatest mangas ever, but it's really a nice read. For all fans of the genre - indeed a must.