By Jason S. Yadao
Let's start off this edition of the Cel Shaded Report with a quick reminder: The Hawaii Entertainment Expo, aka HEXXP, is this weekend. Here's a post summarizing pretty much everything that's going on, here's the schedule, here's the website, I'll be popping in and out maybe today, more likely on Saturday, definitely sticking around for a good chunk of Sunday. If you're going today, by the way, please do stop by the "How to Survive Single-Day and Multi-Day Conventions" panel scheduled for 3 p.m.; it's hosted by Ray Nagar of Project 760 Productions, who regaled me with tales from the California anime convention circuit Thursday during what started out as a lunch outing but ended up being a five-hour conversation. That's right, people, five hours. And I was thoroughly entertained for every minute of it. Now, Ray's panel won't last for five hours, but I'm sure he can fill his allotted one hour quite nicely, thank you very much.
Not much more to say beyond that, except I hope to see you there and maybe, just maybe, I'll have a few pictures of what goes on posted here sometime between Monday and the end of the age (and with the way my non-fandom-related to-do list has been lately, it'll probably be closer to the latter than the former).
Today, however, our focus is on local books with a twist of manga (or, in the case of one of the books profiled here, MangaBento) that have recently gone on sale or are about to hit the market. The first book is one that I profiled in this space a few weeks ago: Journey of Heroes, the graphic novel recounting the story of the all-Japanese American 442nd Regimental Combat Team and the 100th Infantry Battalion and their service during World War II. Author Stacey Hayashi invited me to a reception held for the veterans and their families before the formal debut event; here's a small gallery of pictures (as in seven!) that I shot while I was there.
One thing that I wasn't able to answer with much certainty in my last post was where people could pick up a copy of this fine publication, whether locally or abroad. I recently learned that the book is available to order for $10 plus shipping and tax at 442comicbook.com/shop.html (please be patient, though, they have a lot of things to take care of at the moment). Those of you locally can buy the book in person at the Noelani Craft & Children's Fair at Noelani Elementary School in Manoa on Nov. 10. (By sheer coincidence, the Noelani fair's also going to be the craft fair season kickoff for the nemu*nemu crew, so that's two reasons right there for you to go.) For the latest updates on all things related to Journey of Heroes, visit www.facebook.com/442comicbook.
As for what I think of the book? I haven't had a chance to look closely at it yet, but I have given copies to a coworker as well as my esteemed tag-team partner in fandom. Wilma's read it, and already she's impressed enough to start working on a review of it. We may have a joint essay for y'all sometime down the line. My coworker, meanwhile, loved the art and the story. She also pointed out one panel that caught her eye in particular to pretty much everyone on our universal copy/design desk that night:
I think you can understand why she'd be giddy about it.
The second book is Cacy & Kiara and the Curse of the Ki'i, the new young adult novel by Aiea Intermediate art teacher, MidWeek cartoonist and occasional art portfolio/sketchbook reviewer Roy Chang. Cacy & Kiara is the story of two cousins -- one a free-spirited public school gal, the other a rather buttoned-up product of a private school -- who, while on a field trip to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, get flung together on an adventure of a lifetime involving an ancient Hawaiian artifact and a bunch of bad guys who want to get their hands on it. I've been reading through it in my spare time -- chapter 8 of 38, so a more extensive review of this book will be coming down the pipeline soon as well -- and my first-glance impressions are that Roy's manga-style illustrations nicely complement the story.
You can check out Cacy & Kiara for yourself starting sometime next week at both Barnes & Noble stores; look in the children/youth "local interests" section. Or, if you're more inclined to order digitally, you can find it at Amazon, The Islander Group and barnesandnoble.com. Retail price is $11.95. Roy also recently spoke with Pastor Danny Yamashiro on his radio program, "The Good Life Hawaii," about the book, his story as an artist, and his newfound Christian faith; that hourlong conversation can be downloaded at ow.ly/eBkOw.
Finally, we have the book that's worth mentioning simply for its connection to the anime/manga-inspired art group that's mentioned frequently in this space, MangaBento. Adviser Devin Oishi has released a children's e-book that gives a local spin to the classic "Goldilocks and the Three Bears" tale, Pualani and the 3 Mano. Pualani is the Goldilocks of this story, a surfing prodigy who, following a massive wipeout, wanders into the cave of three mano, or sharks. Full disclosure: I was one of the people who helped Devin copy-edit the book, so I've seen the advance proofs ... and the watercolor images included within are quite lovely. Pualani and the 3 Mano is available for $5 on Kindle and its affiliated apps at ow.ly/eBnw5.
More from the anime news desk
Kawaii Kon: We're in that part of the pre-convention calendar where guest announcements for next year start trickling out. The latest news came a few days ago, when it was revealed that the next guest joining the already announced Todd Haberkorn at next year's event, happening March 15-17, is Colleen Clinkenbeard, a Funimation voice actor, director and line producer who's best known as the voice of Luffy in One Piece and Riza Hawkeye in Fullmetal Alchemist. Clinkenbeard's no stranger to Kawaii Kon, having last visited our fair island home back in 2008. For more information, visit www.kawaii-kon.org.
Hawaii International Film Festival: HIFF is wrapping up this weekend, and with it comes your last chance (for now) of seeing Eight Rangers (9:15 p.m. Saturday) and The Wolf Children Ami and Yuki (12:30 p.m. Sunday). Earlier this week, though, one screening was added to the schedule: the tale of the time-traveling bathhouse architect, Thermae Romae, now has a bonus screening at 8:30 p.m. Sunday. Readers in Hilo, get ready, because Thermae Romae is headed your way as well, at 7 p.m. Monday, Oct. 29. Visit www.hiff.org for most of your ticketing needs (Hilo folk will probably want to wait a few days, though.)
Rose of Versailles hits the Internet: And that's legal, free streaming of the classic 1979-80 anime, too -- no bootleg pirated uploads here. Anyway, to whet your whistle for their upcoming DVD release, Nozomi Entertainment has partnered with Viki to post the entire series online for free ... in December. But the first episode, fresh off an advance screening at New York Comic Con last week, is now available, both on Viki and YouTube. Anyone who considers himself (or herself) a scholar of the anime classics owes it to himself to see this episode whenever he can.