The manga market continued to grow in 2019, as it has for the past few years, and the proportion of manga purchased in comic shops, as opposed to the book channel, grew as well. So the pie is bigger and the slice is bigger, which is good news for comic stores.
Here’s a look at some of the top trends driving the manga market in 2019.
SDCC Manga Round-Up: It’s Old but It’s Good”). Kodansha Comics announced its Kodansha Classics line, which will include new hardcover editions of CLAMP’s Chobits and Clover (see "Kodansha Comics to Bring Back ‘Saiyuki,’ ‘Chobits,’ ‘Clover’"). We’re also seeing some older manga that have never been legally available in English before, including Moto Hagio’s The Poe Clan, which Fantagraphics Books is publishing as hefty hardcovers, and Space Battleship Yamato, the source material for the anime Star Blazers. And Udon will be kicking off 2020 with the long-awaited Rose of Versailles, a classic shojo series that has achieved iconic status in Japan (see "Udon Sets Release for ‘Rose of Versailles’ Manga").
Square Enix to Publish Manga in English"). If that sounds familiar, it’s because Kodansha Comics has been using the same model, with the same publisher, for the past ten years.
What this means for readers is more choices, because at least initially, Square Enix is focusing on publishing new titles rather than reclaiming series that have already been licensed (one exception: Soul Eater: The Perfect Edition, a new edition of a title that has been licensed by Yen Press since 2009). The manga announced so far tend to skew toward fantasy, while their non-manga titles are all game-based (see "AnimeNYC: Square Enix Announces Five New Manga").
ICv2 Interview: Ed Chavez on Denpa") has acquired Moto Hagio’s Li’l Leo and a manga about the creation of Gundam, and they brought the artist TAa, who draws the Fate/stay night spinoff Today’s Menu with the Emiya Family to AnimeNYC (see "AnimeNYC: Denpa to Publish History of ‘Gundam,’ Moto Hagio Cat Manga"). Udon has licensed not only Rose of Versailles but also Moyoco Anno’s Sugar Sugar Rune, an all-ages manga originally published by Del Rey in the mid-2000s. And J-Novel Club, which publishes light novels digitally, has recently expanded its line to include print manga and novels, including the manga Animeta!, the story of a young woman making her way through the anime industry.