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Yen Press Licenses Sound! Euphonium, Magical Girl Raising Project Novels, Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash Manga

posted on by Karen Ressler
Magical Girl Raising Project novel slated for summer 2017

Yen Press announced on Wednesday that it has licensed the Sound! Euphonium and Magical Girl Raising Project novels, as well as the Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash manga. The Magical Girl Raising Project novel is slated for summer 2017.

Takarajimasha published Ayano Takeda's first Sound! Euphonium (Hibike! Euphonium: Kitauji Kōkō Suisōgaku-Bu e Yōkoso or Sound! Euphonium Welcome to Kitauji High School's Musical Instrument Club) novel in December 2013 as part of its Japan Love Story Prize series.

Takeda followed up the original novel with the Hibike! Euphonium 2 Kitauji Kōkō Suisōgaku-Bu no Ichiban Nagai Natsu (The Kitauji High School Concert Band's Longest Summer) novel in March 2015, then the Hibike! Euphonium 2 Kitauji Kōkō Suisōgaku-Bu, Saidai no Kiki (The Kitauji High School Concert Band's Worst Disaster) novel in April 2015, and then the Hibike! Euphonium 2 Kitauji Kōkō Suisōgaku-Bu no Himitsu no Hanashi (The Kitauji High School Concert Band's Secret Story) short story collection in June 2015. Takeda released the two-part novel spinoff Rikka Kōkō Marching Band e Yōkoso! (Welcome to the Rikka High School Marching Band) in August and September, focusing on the character Azusa Sasaki and Rikka High School (based on the real-life nationally renowned Tachibana High School Marching Band).

The series inspired an anime adaptation from Kyoto Animation in 2015, and the second season is currently airing. Crunchyroll streamed the first season as it aired in Japan, and is also streaming the second season. Ponycan USA released the first anime season in the U.S. on Blu-ray Disc and DVD.

The original novel's story follows of the Kitauji Music club, which used to always advance to national competitions. Ever since the adviser changed, though, it hasn't advanced past the Kansai tournament. However, thanks to the newly appointed adviser's strict instruction, the students are steadily improving. The club members' daily lives are full of ups and downs including fights over solos and the decision resign club activities to focus on studies.

Takarajimasha published the first volume of Asari Endō's Magical Girl Raising Project (Mahō Shōjo Ikusei Keikaku) light novel series with art by Maruino in June 2012. Endō also wrote several short story collections and six follow-up novels. The most recent follow-up, Magical Girl Raising Project ACES, shipped in September 2015.

The novels are set in a world where a social game called The Magical Girl Raising Project allows one in tens of thousands of people to be a "magical girl" — possessing extraordinary physical capabilities and looks, as well as special magical powers that set them apart from the rest of the human race. But one day, in a district containing 16 magical girls, the administration announces that it must halve the number of magical girls to solve the problem of magical energy. At first, the 16 magical girls race to collect more "magical candy" than their competitors, but the rules quickly become twisted, and it quickly becomes a murderous battle for survival among them.

An anime adaptation premiered in October and Crunchyroll is streaming the series as it airs in Japan.

Mutsumi Okubashi launched a manga adaptation of Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash in Square Enix's Gangan Joker magazine in April 2015, and Square Enix published the third compiled volume on August 22.

In the story, Haruhito awakens in the dark, and he doesn't know where he is, why is he there, and where he came from. Around him there are several men and women who have the same circumstances. Haruhito and his companions find themselves in a "game-like world" called Grimgar and must form a party, cooperate, and learn new skills to survive the harsh environment together.

Ao Jūmonji launched the Grimgar of Fantasy and Ash light novel series with illustrations by Eiri Shirai in 2013. J-Novel Club is publishing the novels digitally. An anime adaptation premiered in January 2016, and FUNimation Entertainment streamed the series as it aired in Japan.

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