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42nd Annual Kodansha Manga Awards' Nominees Announced

posted on by Rafael Antonio Pineda
Arslan, In/Spectre, Cells at Work!, Lovesick Ellie, Suteki na Kareshi, Tongari Bōshi no Atelier among nominations

Japanese publisher Kodansha announced the nominees on Thursday for its 42nd annual Manga Awards, honoring 12 titles across three categories. The winner for each category will be announced on May 10.

Best Shōnen Manga

The Heroic Legend of Arslan (Arslan Senki)
Hiromu Arakawa
Magazine: Bessatsu Shōnen Magazine (Kodansha)
Summary: In the prosperous kingdom of Pars lies the Royal Capital of Ecbatana, a city of splendor and wonder, ruled by the undefeated and fearsome King Andragoras. Arslan is the young and curious prince of Pars who, despite his best efforts, doesn't seem to have what it takes to be a proper king like his father.

At the age of 14, Arslan goes to his first battle and loses everything as the blood-soaked mist of war gives way to scorching flames, bringing him to face the demise of his once glorious kingdom. However, it is Arslan's destiny to be a ruler, and despite the trials that face him, he must now embark on a journey to reclaim his fallen kingdom.

In/Spectre (Kyokō Suiri)
Chasiba Katase
Magazine: Shōnen Magazine R (Kodansha)
Summary: When she was still just a girl, Kotoko was kidnapped by yokai. These spirits made her into a powerful intermediary between the spirit and human worlds, but this power came at a price: an eye and a leg. Now, years later, she watches out for dangerous yokai while developing feelings for a young man named Kuro, who is also special: an incident with a yokai has given him healing powers. He's surprised when Kotoko asks him to team up to handle renegade yokai, preserving the thin line between reality and the supernatural.

Cells at Work! (Hataraku Saibō)
Akane Shimizu
Magazine: Monthly Shonen Sirius (Kodansha)
Summary: The average human body contains about 60 trillion cells, and each of them has work to do! But when you get injured, viruses or bacteria invade, or when an allergic reaction flares up, everyone from the silent but deadly white blood cells to the brainy neurons has to work together to get through the crisis!

Paru Itagaki
Magazine: Weekly Shōnen Champion (Akita Shoten)
Summary: The manga takes place in a world of carnivores and herbivores, where there is a lot of hope, love, and anxiety. Regoshi is a wolf who is a member of Cherryton Academy's drama club, and even though he's a wolf, he's very sensitive. The manga follows the adolescent life of Regoshi and many other animals.

Best Shōjo Manga

Lovesick Ellie (Koi Wazurai no Ellie)
Magazine: Dessert (Kodansha)
Summary: Eriko Ichimura spends her high school days in complete obscurity. Her sole hobby is staring at handsome, smooth-spoken Akira "Omi-kun" Ohmi, and tweeting her daily fantasies under the screenname "Lovesick @Ellie." One fateful day, she accidentally bears witness to Omi-kun's true self — and if that weren't enough, he sees her mortifying Twitter, too! Follow along with a plain, perverted girl, a two-faced boy, and their curious romance!

Kore wa Kitto Koi Janai (This Definitely Isn't Love)
Maya Tachiki
Magazine: Line Manga (Kodansha)
Summary: Hibiki, a drummer, meets the annoying and orange-haired guitarist and vocalist Shō, and the calm and cool-headed bassist Ritsu. While Hibiki and Shō both don't want to form a band, they end up being charmed by each other's music enough to suppress their dislike of each other... with one rule, the violation of which means the instant breakup of the band: no romance within the band!

Suteki na Kareshi (Where's My Lovely Sweetheart?)
Kazune Kawahara
Magazine: Bessatsu Margaret (Shueisha)
Summary: Nonoka has one romantic wish: to watch the New Year's Eve countdown with her boyfriend. She's run into one hiccup, it's December and she still hasn't met anyone despite making her big high school debut. What's Nonoka to do?

Tōmei na Yurikago (The Invisible Cradle)
Bakka Okita
Magazine: Hatsu Kiss (Kodansha)
Summary: The manga centers on nursing student Bakka who begins her residency at an obstetrics and gynecology clinic on her mother's recommendation. The manga's stories are based on Okita's experiences working as a nurse at a similar clinic.

Best General Manga

Sanju Mariko (Mariko at 80)
Yuki Ozawa
Magazine: Be Love (Kodansha)
Summary: The manga centers on veteran novelist Mariko Kōda, who lives with the families of both her son and her grandson in one house. Feeling like she no longer has any place in her home, she decides to leave the house and strike out on her own, beginning with living in a manga cafe in the city.

Tongari Bōshi no Atelier (Atelier of Witch Hat)
Kamome Shirahama
Magazine: Morning two (Kodansha)
Summary: The manga centers on Koko, a girl who lives in a little village, and who has always dreamed of becoming a wizard. But being born without magical aptitude meant that she could never become a wizard, and could never hope to witness magic's spark. She gave up on her dream. But one day, a traveling wizard named Kiefley came to her village, and she happened to see him performing magic.

Hare Kon. (Harem Marriage)
Magazine: Young Magazine (Kodansha)
Summary: The story centers on Koharu, a woman who left her hometown to work in Tokyo. After finding out that her boyfriend is actually married, her heartbreak is enough for her to call it quits and head back to her hometown. Her troubles don't end at home though, when she finds out that her family is in debt. Fortunately, a handsome stranger offers to pay their debt, if only Koharu will marry him. It just so happens that this stranger already has two wives.

Fragile - Byōrii Kishi Keiichirō no Shoken (Fragile - The Finds of Pathologist Keiichirō Kishi)
Writer: Saburō Megumi, Artist: Bin Kusamizu
Magazine: Afternoon (Kodansha)
Summary: The manga centers around Keiichirō Kishi, a pathologist who advises doctors on their diagnoses and whose judgement is greatly trusted. Often, doctors remark that he is an eccentric person, but is good at what he does.

In past years, Kodansha gave out a "Best Children's Manga" award as well, but starting in 2015 Kodansha has integrated the nominees for that category into the Best Shōnen Manga and Best Shōjo Manga categories instead.

Last year, Kotono Katō's Altair: A Record of Battles manga won the Best Shōnen Manga award, Maki Miyoshi's P to JK manga won the Best Shōjo Manga award, and Katsuhisa Minami's The Fable manga won the Best General Manga award.

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