"In a town with no surprises, one secret could change everything."

That's the tagline for "Beautiful Creatures," the graphic novel based on Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl's Caster Chronicles novels; the movie based on the story is set to premiere on February 14.

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Four self-described "major geeks" have banded together to form a new publisher, Chromatic Press, which will specialize in original shoujo (girls') and josei (women's) manga, light novels, audio drama—and more.

All four have strong backgrounds in Japanese pop culture fandom and publishing: Lillian Diaz-Przybyl was a senior editor at Tokyopop and helped shepherd many popular manga through the publishing process. Lianne Sentar is the author of Tokyopop's Sailor Moon novels and also works as a professional manga adapter; her credits include several volumes of "Fruits Basket" and "Alice in the Country of Hearts." Rebecca Scoble is a freelance manga editor and comics consultant, and Jill Astley is a major figure in otome game fandom who has presented scholarly papers on the topic and runs Lijakaca's Otome Gaming Blog. Read More...

It's a sparse week for new releases, but this week's list makes up in quality for what it lacks in quantity: Fresh volumes of "Sailor Moon," "Fairy Tail," and "Limit," as well as a new issue of Shonen Jump with an Akira Toriyama one-shot. Dive right in!

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Last week was slow, but this week brings us the first novel by "Vampire Hunter" D illustrator Yoshitaka Amano as well as new volumes in some favorite series: "Black Butler," "A Bride's Story," "Flowers of Evil," and "Genshiken."

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Shonen Jump Alpha celebrates its first birthday with next week's issue, and they are changing things up a bit, starting with the name: Alpha no more (and certainly not beta), they are changing their name to Weekly Shonen Jump, the same as their Japanese counterpart. And the even bigger change is that new chapters of SJ series will appear in both magazines on the same day.

And there are some changes in the lineup: "Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan" comes to a glorious end in this week's issue of with the final battle between our hero Rikuo Nura's Night Parade of a Hundred Demons and his rival Nue and the Gokadoin clan, all in full color. The fate of the world is in the balance—if Rikuo can't pull it out, it's going to be all yokai, all the time around here. Read More...

If you're a fan of sophisticated seinen manga, the series you like probably came from IKKI Magazine: "House of Five Leaves," "Children of the Sea," "Afterschool Charisma," "Dorohedoro," and "Bokurano: Ours" are all IKKI series, and all were published in North America by Viz.

Now IKKI is cutting out the middleman with a webcomics site that is publishing comics in Japanese and, in at least one case, in English as well: "Pandemonium -Wizard Village-" by Sho Shibamoto, which updates on the second Friday of every month, is presented in both Japanese and English.

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Back at the turn of the century, Tokyopop was in the vanguard of the manga revolution, with Mixx Magazine, "Sailor Moon," and later, "Fruits Basket." At one point, they were the second largest manga publisher in the U.S., next to Viz. And then things slowly turned sour. "Fruits Basket" came to an end, Kodansha pulled their licenses from Tokyopop altogether, their Original English Language (OEL) manga initiative didn't sell a lot of books (although it launched or boosted a lot of careers) and finally, in April 2011, they announced they wouldn't be publishing manga any more.

That wasn't quite the end, though. Tokyopop still continued to exist as a company, and last year they announced that they were getting back into the book biz, in a limited way, publishing "Hetalia" and their OEL manga "Bizenghast" and "Psy-Comm" as print-on-demand books in partnership with the anime retailer RightStuf. They also launched a Tokyopop newsletter, which focused more on food and fashion and other "otaku lifestyle" topics than manga, via Nerdist. Read More...

We're starting the New Year off with a bang, with a stack of new and classic manga for every taste: Fantagraphics' deluxe edition of Moto Hagio's "Heart of Thomas," the second volume of Osamu Tezuka's "Message to Adolf," the first volume of Naoki Urasawa's "21st Century Boys" (the followup to his award-winning "20th Century Boys"), and a stack of solid shoujo and shonen titles. Let's read!

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There's the good, the great, and then there's the BEST. Welcome to MTV Geek's Best of 2012 -- what we thought were the cream of the crop this year in the world of GEEK!

10. ALICE IN THE COUNTRY OF HEARTS by Quinrose and Soumei Hoshino - This quirky manga goes far beyond its roots in a dating-sim game. Quinrose takes the world of Lewis Carroll's "Alice in Wonderland" as a starting point and fills it with engaging characters, some guileless, some menacing. This was hugely popular when Tokyopop published it a few years back, and Yen Press has picked it up in beautifully designed omnibus volumes that really do the story justice.

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Things are quiet in the manga world this week... too quiet. With the year almost over, and the holidays almost upon us, pickings are slim at the comics shop. But we do have a few new releases to tide us over till the January deluge.

This week's top choice is vol. 2 of "Paradise Kiss," Ai Yazawa's stylish story of a goody-goody high school student who has been faithfully following the path set out for her by her elders—until she falls in with a group of fashion students and gets a whole new outlook on life, helped along not only by her new friends' artistic endeavors but also by the romantic attentions of their leader, George. This is a fairly basic love story, but the fashion-school setting really gives it a boost, and the book is worth a look for Yazawa's art alone. (If it sounds familiar, this series was originally published in the U.S. by Tokyopop as a five-volume series; the current publisher, Vertical, has a new translation and is releasing it in three large-format volumes.)

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It's a big week for Yen and Seven Seas but a quiet week for everyone else. Viz has the final volume of "Kekkaishi," Yen Press has a collection of short pieces by "Emma" creator Kaoru Mori, and Seven Seas launches a new series about high schoolers with gender issues.

Kaoru Mori has built up quite a fandom among English-speaking readers for two series: "Emma," the story of a Victorian maid in love with a wealthy man, and "A Bride's Story," which is set in Asia Minor in the 19th century. Mori composes her pages carefully and uses quiet moments to give her characters real depth, and in both series she indulges her love of period detail. This week, Yen Press has a treat for Mori fans: "Kaoru Mori: Anything and Something." This stand-alone book collects short stories and character sketches in a variety of genres, some of which may be new to English-language readers. It's a perfect sampler for anyone who loves good art.

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The digital manga magazine "Shonen Jump Alpha" has been in the news lately after the big announcement that starting next month, they will carry new chapters of "Naruto," "Bleach," and other series the same day they come out in Japan.

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This is a slow week for new manga releases, but last week we had a bumper crop, so let's combine the two! With the holidays almost upon us, we have some nice deluxe editions—"Thermae Romae" and the Sailor Moon box set—as well as the new "Interview with the Vampire" graphic novel, a fresh volume of "Real" from Takehiko Inoue, and more!

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It's really that easy: Viz Media has a great digital deal going on until November 20 for first-time customers: If you download their app (for iOS or Android), they will give you volume 1 of the series of your choice for free. Digitally, of course.

Naturally, I don't qualify for this, because I have had the Viz app since the day it came out, but if you're interested in that free volume, I have some suggestions.

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Viz is giving manga and anime lovers something special to put on their holiday wish lists this year: A deluxe boxed set of Hayao Miyazaki's manga "Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind." And while the $60 price tag may seem steep, it is already discounted at Amazon, and Viz is giving away one copy in a special sweepstakes.

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