Bladedance of Elementalers Novel Illustrator Replaced Due to Poor Health
posted on by Egan Loo
Kadokawa/Media Factory's MF Bunko J imprint announced on Friday that Hanpen Sakura will no longer draw the illustrations in Yū Shimizu's Bladedance of Elementalers (Seirei Tsukai no Blade Dance) light novel series due to poor health. As a result, Yūji Nimura (The Leviathan of the Covenant/Meiyaku no Leviathan) will now draw the illustrations, starting in the 14th novel volume.
Shimizu launched the "elemental fantasy" series in 2010, and Media Factory published the 13th volume — the last one with Sakura's art — on April 24, 2014. Artist Issei Hyōju (MM!) has been drawing the manga adaptation in Media Factory's Monthly Comic Alive magazine since 2012. The light novel series inspired a television anime (pictured below left) last year.
MF Bunko J thanked the fans for supporting the series, and apologized to fans who have enjoyed Sakura's work. Sakura will still be involved in the novel series and the franchise it inspired, and will be credited as "original character designer."
Shimizu said that when it became difficult for Sakura to continue drawing for Bladedance of Elementalers, Shimizu discussed the matter with the editors and came to this decision. Shimizu applauded Sakura's work for the past four years on the series and credited Sakura for its continued success not only in the novels, but also the manga and anime adaptations. Shimizu also praised Nimura's work in The Leviathan of the Covenant novel illustrations and other projects.
Nimura said he humbly accepted the project and vowed to do his best to rise up to the challenge of more Bladedance of Elementalers with Shimizu. Nimura asked for the fans' continued support on both Bladedance of Elementalers and The Leviathan of the Covenant. The artist drew the illustration below to mark the transition:
In the "elemental fantasy" story, only a pure girl may enter into a spirit contract. At Areishia Spirit Academy, the daughters of nobility are assembled to take elite classes and become spirit elementalists. At the beginning of the story, a boy named Kamito happened to be peeping on a student named Claire while she was taking a bath, and he unexpectedly has to make a contract with a spirit instead of Claire.
Artist Non also replaced Akaringo as the illustrator of Kazuma Ōtorino's Ryūgajō Nanana no Maizōkin (Nanana's Buried Treasure) light novel series. Just as in Bladedance of Elementalers, the replacement due to poor health happened after Nanana's Buried Treasure inspired a television anime series.