Fruits Basket Returns to US
The 23 volumes of Fruits Basket by Netsuke Takuya were originally published here by Tokyopop from 2004-2009. It was immensely popular, a huge bestseller in both Japan and the US, and demonstrated the potential value of the manga market in North America, particularly in bookstores. It also showed how much of a buying force female readers could be.
It’s the story of an orphan who moves in with a magical family. Each of the members, when hugged, is cursed to turn into an animal member of the Chinese zodiac. Of particular significance to the young lady is the relationship between the Cat and Rat cousins, both of whom are interested in her. Beyond the illustrations of the animals and their correspondingly larger-than-life human personalities, there’s a large amount of angst in the series as the girl learns about the curse on the family and works to free them from it.
Yen Press will be publishing the series “with new translations in twelve updated collector’s editions”. Volumes 1 and 2 will be out in June 2016, with one more each month following.
They’ll also publish two other works by Takaya: her newest, Liselotte & Witch’s Forest, and a classic, Twinkle Stars. Both have not been available in English before. Here’s the descriptions:
In Liselotte & Witch’s Forest, titular character Liselotte holds out hope of finding an important person from her past, but her quest leads her to a forest rumored to be inhabited by witches.
Sakuya, the lead character of Twinkle Stars, has always been mesmerized by the night sky, but when she meets a boy at her eighteenth birthday party, she discovers that the stars may actually have more to do with her fate than she ever imagined.
Liselotte & Witch’s Forest (below left) will debut in July; a release date for Twinkle Stars (below right), which will be published in five omnibus editions, has not been announced.