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Dark Horse Licenses Shinji Kajio, Kenji Tsuruta's Emanon Manga

posted on by Karen Ressler
Series about girl with 3 billion years of memories slated for May 2019

Dark Horse Comics announced at its Otakon panel on Friday that it has licensed Shinji Kajio and Kenji Tsuruta's Emanon manga series and plans to release the first volume, Emanon Vol. 1: Memories of Emanon, in May 2019. Dana Lewis (Wandering Island) is translating the series.

The manga is based on Kajio's Emanon prose stories, which Kajio began in 1983 with a first volume titled Omoide Emanon (Memories of Emanon). He has since published six other volumes for the series, though two of the volumes were later compiled into one.

Tsuruta, the novels' illustrator, is collaborating with Kajio on the manga adaptations of the Emanon series. The Omoide Emanon manga volume shipped in 2008, and Kajio and Tsuruta began an adaptation of the second book, Sasurai Emanon, in the same year. The Omoide Emanon manga was nominated for the Seiun Awards in 2009. The fourth Emanon manga volume shipped on April 26.

The title character Emanon ("No Name" backwards) is a mysterious girl who holds 3 billion years of memories — dating from when life began on Earth until now. Dark Horse describes the first volume of the manga:

The story of Emanon Vol. 1: Memories of Emanon begins in February 1967, where a young student is musing about the future on a ferry trip along the southeastern coast of Japan. On one side of the water, the war is escalating in Vietnam; far away on the other side, three astronauts have just died in the Apollo 1 fire. During the overnight voyage, he'll meet and fall in love with Emanon—a mysterious young woman who carries a past deeper and more profound than all his dreams and fears of tomorrow.

Kurodahan Press published the first prose short story, also titled "Omoide Emanon," in English under the title "Emanon: A Reminiscence" in its Speculative Japan 2 anthology.

Kajio won the Nihon SF Taishō Award in 1991 for his novel Salamander Senmetsu.

Dark Horse is also releasing Tsuruta's Wandering Island manga, which was nominated for an Eisner Award last year. Tsuruta's Spirit of Wonder manga inspired two original video animations (OVAs) in 1992 and 2001. Dark Horse Comics licensed and published the original manga in 1998, and AnimEigo released the first OVA under the title Spirit of Wonder: Miss China's Ring, while Bandai Entertainment released the second OVA titled Spirit of Wonder Scientific Boys Club.

Source: Email correspondence, Dark Horse Otakon panel (Michelle Liu)

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