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Asura Girl [Archive]

The 2014 Haikasoru Gift Guide

What better present is there than a book? Not only does it show that you think the gift recipient is intelligent, you get to show off your own taste and sophistication as well. That’s what they call a win-win situation. We have a wide assortment of books, and appeal to several different audiences, so here is our recommendation list for this holiday season.

What should you buy for:

A junior high or high school student

High school students need Battle Royale Remastered, our new translation of the cult classic, and the non-fiction companion title The Battle Royale Slam Book. Imagine the year-end term papers anyone so outfitted could write. Sometimes these poor things are told to read a book over winter break, and write a reaction paper, with sources! (The Slam Book is good for that.)

“Okay teacher, I will. I will.”

Someone who doesn’t actually like to read

All You Need Is Kill: The Graphic Novel. It has pictures. It’s a Western-style comic book. It makes a good gift bundle along with Edge of Tomorrow and the manga, and perhaps even the film DVD. It’s a transmedia experience with a very low word-count.

My ahead-of-the-curve friend who already reads everything, hears about all the new writers first, and is impossible to shop for

They need a copy of Phantasm Japan, which has stories by some of the best new writers, and is anchored by a stunning illustrated novella by Dempow Torishima. It’s…well, it’s hard to describe. No matter who your avant friend is, he or she will be surprised.

Young people who love science

Did you know that all our books are still in print? That means Rocket Girls and Rocket Girls: The Last Planet are still available! Ready for a wacky adventure with solid science grounding? These are the books for you. Highly recommended for anyone who loved Andy Weir’s novel The Martian.

My uncle who won’t stop talking about conspiracy theories and the end of the world at our family parties and just ends up upsetting everyone

Shut him up with a copy of Virus. It’s a thriller, like a Japanese Michael Chrichton novel, by Japanese science fiction grandmaster Sakyo Komatsu. This book has everything…submarines, nuclear weapons, fast cars, two billion corpses, biochemical warfare, real science, international cooperation at the South Pole, and hunger-mad politicians! And it’s long enough that Uncle Herbie will probably fall asleep with it tented up on his stomach somewhat early in the evening. Snoring is better than going on about the gold standard and chemtrails all night, isn’t it?

Old-school types who still tell ghost stories on Christmas Eve

People do that? Yes, or they used to. Still somewhat common in The United Kingdom. For some creepy yet all-ages fun, you need our ghost story collection by Miyuki Miyabe Apparitions.

My creepy cousin who just sits at the dinner table with everyone else and doesn’t eat or make a sound

Definitely Asura Girl. Say no more.

Happy shopping, and happy holidays!

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ASURA GIRL winners!

We had a lot of great responses to our latest giveaway. So, who won a copy of the wild thriller Asura Girl?

First winner is Scott for citing extreme horror legend Ed Lee and his infamous Bighead. This is almost like an intervention! Scott, here’s another book for you to read, so you won’t have to read Bighead again!

Next up is Nathan, who read a children’s book about Satanic Ritual Abuse—that is, a book designed to help kids deal with the abuse, which ended up being a weird case of mass cultural hysteria. Very freaky, Nathan!

A couple of people mentioned Welcome to the NHK, but we liked Ken’s. Glad you’re feeling better, Ken!

And finally, Natalya, who reminds us that often the wildest books we read are the ones we read as tiny children.

Thanks everyone who entered, and try us again next time. Also, on Twitter, the @VizMedia account is running its own Asura Girl sweepstakes using the hashtag #wildreads—no skill needed there, just name the wildest book you’ve ever read and you have a random chance of winning!

Asura Girl

There was a kid in my sixth-grade homeroom named Takashi Nizaki. He was really smart and got good grades, but at times he could be a sadistic bully and a bit schizo. He would be friends with you one day only to cut you dead the next. He was smart and good at sports, and he could talk circles around everybody, but there was something a bit spooky about him. Still, he ruled the class. The only one who could stand up to him was Masaki Urayasu from the class next door, and when Urayasu was beating the crap out of Nizaki, it was Urayasu’s friend, Yoji Kaneda, who waded in to break it up. (more…)


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