Yes. This totally made my day.

I’ve been trying…. TRYING to restrain myself from oggling a little too much but I honestly can’t. Americans you guys are lucky folks for having Hagio Moto during Comic Con and I think the world is blessed to have more of her stories FINALLY printed in English. And since the news said that it won’t be the last, we’re all looking forward to more.

It’s been on twitter since last night, or rather the entire morning for me, and everyone’s talking about Fantagraphics’ move in manga and they’re bringing in a big guns to start it off: A collection of Hagio Moto’s stories and Hourou Musuko, Wandering Son. And guess who’s behind it? Matt Thorn! Perhaps the most sound scholar (in English) on Shoujo Manga1 This had me up all afternoon and it was sad that the people I wanted to oggle it to (my lovely twitter list) were all asleep. So I’ll place the oggling here. BECAUSE REALLY IT’S GREAT! I’ve read some of Hagio-sensei’s works and Wandering Son in Japanese and I am infinitely happy how these mangas are finally having an English voice.

I’m excited because for one these are really different stories. Second, I feel that English manga always lacked this aspect seen in seinen and josei manga in Japan, the small yet strong emotional stories, written in reflection and often something to be reflected upon. Some might contest that it’s always been there but really, it’s these slice of life slow-paced tales that sometimes highlight the power of emotions in every panel without being overtly dramatic. Wandering Son is such a title, a really beautiful tale of coming to terms with one’s sexuality and identity. I will warn you folks that the story may appear slow, but really, we don’t tackle our identity crisis in a span of a chapter in our lives right? This is a beautiful exposition of the hero and heroine’s troubles. It’s bloody cute and lovely and painful all at the same time that you guys better get it once it’s out! I will definitely get my copy too granted it comes out here in the Philippines. Did you guys see the cover? OMG VERTICAL! You’re not alone in the pretty cover industry anymore!

Then there’s Hagio Moto. I can only imagine that this is the start of many things and that this will finally be my chance in getting to read the elusive Heart of Thomas, the manga responsible for making me a fujoshi right now. Well, one of many. I’ve had the chance to read Kaze to Ki no Uta before (and I wish this too will get its English equivalent) but Heart of Thomas completely escapes me and as much as I try to find it online, someone always beats me to it. Hence, this announcement excites me. And maybe in a way it also makes me look forward to other Hagio Moto’s works. With Matt Thorn on the reign, I will expect the translation to be fluid and faithful to its language in Japanese. It upsets me that the only work of hers that I’ve read is They were Eleven. Have you guys read that? YOU SHOULD! IT’S BLOODY AWESOME! And still remains one of my favorite shoujo stories of all time. Brilliant! My god, finally more brilliant stories on English print! I can’t wait for the next announcements and MY GOD, FOUR YEARS AS A SECRET!?! WHAT ELSE ARE YOU GUYS KEEPING?

  1. And one of the many reasons why I’m actually considering applying to Kyoto Seika! Yes! I’m a stalker! []