Tokyopop is launching a new imprint, Comics That Matter, with the publication of the story of a man who risked his life to take care of animals that were left behind after the March 2011 meltdown at the Fukishima Daiichi nuclear plant.

Guardian of Fukushima, by writer Fabien Grolleau and artist Ewen Blain, tells the story of Naoto Matsumura, a farmer who was evacuated from the radiation zone after the meltdown. Naoto decided he could not abandon his farm animals, so he returned to the “forbidden zone” to care for them. Tokyopop offered an excerpt of the graphic novel as its Free Comic Book Day selection in 2022 (see “FCBD 2022 Silver Sponsors”). The full-length book includes an introduction by Japan scholar Roland Kelts and will be published on February 28, 2028, as a 144-page paperback, rated for ages 10 and up, with an MSRP of $19.99.

The book will be released a few weeks before the 12th anniversary of the earthquake and tsunami that led to the Fukushima meltdown. Tokyopop CEO Stu Levy made a documentary, Pray for Japan, about the disaster, and the book includes supplemental material by Levy and photographs by Fukushima resident Ko Sasaki.

Tokyopop’s Comics That Matter imprint will focus on graphic novels that raise awareness about important causes, and Guardian of Fukushima will actually be the second title in the imprint; the first is Peremoha: Victory for Ukraine, which was released in 2022 (see “Tokyopop Announces Anthology of Ukraine War Stories”).