Manga |OT|: No matter how I look at it, it's discord's fault we're not popular

January 2019
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    dramazen

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    January 2019 Recommendation: My Brother's Husband


    Simple slice of life | 4 volumes, complete work, licensed in English, French, and Italian
    Yaichi is a work-at-home suburban dad in contemporary Tokyo; formerly married to Natsuki, father to their young daughter, Kana. Their lives suddenly change with the arrival at their doorstep of a hulking, affable Canadian named Mike Flanagan, who declares himself the widower of Yaichi's estranged gay twin, Ryoji. Mike is on a quest to explore Ryoji's past, and the family reluctantly but dutifully takes him in. (source)
    From Lain:
    This first volume felt like a great read to face some of the issues and preconceptions gay people face and some of their problems too like the lack of people to talk with at a young age when they realize their sexual orientation, how faking interest in the other sex and hiding brings them anxiety and troubles. (source)
     
    February 2019
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    February 2019 Recommendation: Kimi ni Todoke


    "Queen of slowjo" | 30 volumes, complete work, licensed in English, French, and Italian
    With her jet-black hair, sinister smile and silent demeanor, Sawako "Sadako" Kuronuma always had trouble fitting in. But her whole life changes when she befriends the most popular boy in class, Shota Kazehaya. Can love trump her cursed life? (source)
    From FlowersisBritish:
    And, extra weird recommendation criteria, my favorite break up manga. Going through a shitty breakup? Read this and get lost in love and drama and all that nonsense and realize she/he/they were just not the one. (source)
     
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    March 2019
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    March 2019 Recommendation: Beastars


    Carnivore-herbivore psychological shounen | 12 volumes, ongoing, licensed in English (Summer 2019)
    At this high school, instead of jocks and nerds, the students are divided into predators and prey.

    At a high school where the students are literally divided into predators and prey, it's personal relationships that maintain the fragile peace. Who among them is a Beastar-an academic and social role model destined to become a leader in a society naturally rife with mistrust?

    Last night at Cherryton Academy, an herbivore student was killed and eaten. Among the members of the drama club, the herbivores' suspicions naturally turn to their carnivore classmates. The prime suspect? Legosi, a large wolf. But he wouldn't hurt a fly-or would he? And will dwarf rabbit Haru bring out the beast in him? Or are his feelings for her.something else? (source)
    From OniBarubary:
    The strength of the writing is impressive. This is a very subtle and carefully deliberated story. It deals with what would be very heavy topics in the world it takes place in but dances through them very deftly and uses it's strong character writing to move the plot forward instead of having things simply happen for the sake of development. (source)
     
    April 2019
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    April 2019 Recommendation: Tenju no Kuni


    Historical Tibetan romantic slice of life | 3 volumes, ongoing, licensed in English
    Khang Zhipa is a 13-year-old doctor's apprentice living in a mountain village in 18th-century Tibet. One day, when he gets back from collecting medicinal herbs, he finds a bride-to-be and her wedding party will be resting at his home for the night. The bride's name is Moshi Rati and it turns out she's actually Khang Zhipa's fiancee from another land, here to stay! Enjoy this heartwarming slice-of-life tale woven by a kind-hearted boy and his mysterious bride. (source)
    From bright side of life:
    My favorite thing is the art is nice and clean with proper emphasis on the characters with toner, details, and blacks so the characters never feel lost in a busy panel. Also those vibrant colors on the colored pages! (source)
     
    May 2019
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    May 2019 Recommendation: Grand Blue

    Note: Published as Grand Blue Dreaming in English.


    Comedic diving + ecchi youth story | 12 volumes, ongoing, licensed in English
    After moving out on his own to a seaside town, Iori Kitahara makes a college debut he never anticipated. A new chapter of his life unfolds, full of diving with beautiful girls and shenanigans with a gaggle of lovable bastards! Idiot-expert Kenji Inoue and au naturel authority Kimitake Yoshioka bring you a glorious college tale filled with booze-fueled antics! (source)
    From Zweizer:
    Grand Blue is a manga loosely associated with diving in broad strokes, at times. In most other sport manga, who make the featured sport the principal focus and build up the cast and setting around it. Here, diving itself is at times little more than an excuse for the authors to create the appropriate setting to let loose a colorful and likeable cast, involved in all maneers of antics as they live their youth, coupled with biting humor and awesome expressions. (source)
     
    June 2019
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    June 2019 Recommendation: Blank Canvas: My So-Called Artist's Journey

    The Japanese name of the series is Kakukaku Shikajika.


    Autobiographical josei | 5 volumes, complete, licensed in English
    High schooler Akiko has big plans to become a popular mangaka before she even graduates, but she needs to get much better at drawing if she ever wants to reach her goal. Looking for an easy fix, she signs up for an art class, thinking all her problems will soon be solved. She’s in for a surprise: her new instructor is a bamboo sword-wielding taskmaster who doesn’t care about manga one bit. But maybe this unconventional art teacher is just what she needs to realize her dreams! (source)
    From striferser:
    This is a story about youth, regret, hard work and more importantly it’s about human relationship. I guess the author want to put her regret into an art. Maybe she want to tell the reader to cherish the thing you have. Maybe she really want to say sorry. Maybe this is her way to have her teacher live forever. I don’t know. But i appreciate her effort in sharing this. (source)
     
    July 2019
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    July 2019 Recommendation: Dream Fossil


    1980s short story collection | 1 volume, complete, licensed in English and Italian
    Dream Fossil is a collection of 15 short stories by the late Satoshi Kon. These stories, serialized in a variety of magazines in the 1980’s, give a rare glimpse into the early stages of Kon’s uniquely compelling style of storytelling. The buds of dream-like themes and imaginative worldviews that would blossom in his later animated works are also readily apparent. Yes the flights of fancy are anchored by knowing, empathetic portrayals of the very human nature of each story. (source)
    From Lain:
    Dream Fossil is good. The stories in it have a wide range. From the sad and a bit disconnected kind like Carve, which opens the book, to the more comedic ones like Summer of Anxiety or Beyond the Sun to the otherworldly ones like Guests. (source)
     
    August 2019
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    August 2019 Recommendation: SOIL (Atsushi Kaneko)


    Horror mystery | 11 volumes, complete work, licensed in French
    Something strange is going on in "Soil New Town." The sudden disappearance of a seemingly normal family leads the two detectives Yokoi and Onoda to the idyllic town in the middle of nowhere. What looks like a routine case at first quickly turns into a complex and deadly riddle where nothing is what it seems to be. Will the two disparate investigators manage to solve the mystery before it's too late? (source)
    From 4 is a cutie:
    The mystery manages to be intelligible but is still strange enough to allow for a variety of interesting scenarios that plague the town. (source)
     
    September 2019
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    September 2019 Recommendation: Astra Lost In Space


    Sci-fi adventure thriller | 5 volumes, complete work, licensed in English
    Available to read on official publisher's site.
    It’s the year 2063, and interstellar space travel has become the norm. Eight students from Caird High School and one child set out on a routine planet camp excursion. While there, the students are mysteriously transported 5,000 light-years away to the middle of nowhere! Will they ever make it back home?! (source)
    From BassForever:
    Astra's strength lies in it's 9 characters, they're all really well developed and balanced where you find yourself enjoying all of them...As a big fan of sci-fi I appreciate the effort the mangaka takes to ensure each planets has a reason for all it's weird alien decisions. (source)