It's always interesting to look across the ocean to what creators and publishers are doing in Japan, because much of what happens over there ends up over here as well. Here's a quick roundup.
New Legend of Zelda manga: With the release of the latest Legend of Zelda game, Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, comes news that the two-woman creative team known as Akira Himekawa will draw a new Legend of Zelda manga based on the new game. The manga will be published by Shogakukan, which is one of the parent companies of the American publisher Viz Media, so it's a good bet that Viz will eventually publish this one as well; they have already published ten volumes of Legend of Zelda manga.
Shoulder-a-Coffin, Kuro to come back after two-year hiatus: Shoulder-a-Coffin, Kuro, a light supernatural fantasy tale told in mostly 4-koma (four-panel gag strip) format, was licensed by Yen Press a few years ago, and the first two volumes were well received. After that there were no new volumes because the series, which ran in Houbunsha's Manga Time Kirara magazine, was on hiatus while creator Satoro Kiyuduki worked on GA: Geijutsuka Art Design Class (also licensed by Yen). But there's good news for Kuro fans this week, and it came in the form of a note on the wraparound band on GA: Kiyuduki is back at work on Shoulder-a-Coffin, Kuro, and the series will resume in February. In addition, the third collected volume will be available in Japan in January.
New series from Princess Resurrection creator: Princess Resurrection was a gothic horror series that featured a chainsaw-weilding princess in a maid's outfit who brought dead people back to life. How do you follow that up? Manga-ka Yasunori Mitsunaga has just unveiled his new series, Kan Tantei D&W, a murder mystery that will feature an odd pair, a recluse and a man who is sensitive to the smell of blood. The series started its run in Shonen Gahosha's Monthly Young King magazine last weekend.
Nodame Cantabile creator changes gears: Having her first child seems to have shifted manga-ka Tomoko Ninomiya's priorities a bit: She took a hiatus from her popular josei manga Nodame Cantabile, a romantic comedy about students of classical music, when she had her baby three years ago, and now she is back with a one-shot manga about caring for babies for Shueisha's Monthly YOU magazine that will turn into an ongoing series in the spring. Ninomiya also has another ongoing series, 87 Clockers, that has been running in Shueisha's Jump Kai magazine since last June. Nodame Cantabile, which was licensed in the U.S. by Del Rey, was a critical success but a bit of a disappointment in the sales department, so it's not clear that either of these series would make it over here, but if they do, look for Viz to pick them up, as Shueisha is one of their parent companies.