2014-07-28

When asked which fictional world would I want to live in...

...I never knew how to answer. There are the usual ones like Hogwarts, Narnia and Middle Earth, but I always liked contemporary worlds more. And I haven't read any Narnia books. But the worlds in contemporary fiction are not really "fictional", are they? So yeah, most of the time I just sucked it up and said things like "Well, I don't know about living there, but I would love to visit [insert my favorite flavor fictional world of the month." Up until now! Because I finally found the Perfect Place - a deadly dreamy world that is both fictional and contemporary. And this place is no other than the town of Night Vale. Yes,

I wanna live in Night Vale.

Now, tell me, doesn't Night Vale sound like the bestest little town EVER?

And proud Night Vale citizen, Cecil Baldwin, podcasts the best radio show that has ever existed - or NOT existed:
Welcome to Night Vale

Cecil is the voice of Night Vale. He is also the voice of paranoia, fear and terror and everyonething else. And he clearly plays favorites and you probably shouldn't get on his wrong side.


Carlos, the beautiful scientist with the beautiful hair is Cecil's beautiful scientist. (I've just listened to episode 27 and now I want to do some Carlos and Cecil fan art like these or this:
- Yes, I SHIP them! {source})

You can find Welcome to Night Vale on iTunes and at commonplace.com

Good night friends, good night!

(Are you listening to Welcome to Night Vale? You are, right? Right? Even if you don't, you should. You really should. I mean, reaaaally should. Otherwise, the Sheriff's Secret Police, the Vague Yet Menacing Government Agency and the Glow Cloud will not be happy. And you wouldn't want that, believe me.)

2014-07-24

YA QUILTBAG Rainbow...


...out of books I haven't (have yet to) read:

~click for full size~

White(ish) - Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas (bisexual/lesbian undertones(?), mystery), King of the Screwups by K.L. Going (GLBT, contemporary, humorous coming of age), The Red Sun Rises by Victoria Kinnaird (GLBT, vampires), A Kiss in the Dark by Cat Clarke (emotional, twisty, secrets & lies), Girl Walking Backwards by Bett Williams (self harm, drugs, mental health, anti-coming-of-age, volleyball, California, queer), Jack by A.M. Homes (gay parent, YA), The Way He Lived by Emily Wing Smith (religion, death, grief, GLBT), Someday This Pain Will Be Useful to You by Peter Cameron (realistic, GLBT), A Strong and Sudden Thaw by R.W. Day (GLBT, post-apocalyptic, fantasy, dragons)
Red to pink Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (secrets, "blackmail", romance, friendship, coming out, 2015), Mariposa Gown by Rigoberto González (sequel to The Mariposa Club, drag, prom, friendship), The Red Sheet by Mia Kerick ("hero-complex"?, GLBT, jockxnerd), About a Girl by Joanne Horniman (secrets, poetic, lesbian), Grydscaen: Utopia by Natsuya Uesugi (GLBT, art college life, NA?, paranormal), Rage: A Love Story by Julie Anne Peters ("dark side of first love", lesbian, abuse), Sugar Rush by Julie Burchill (private school, lesbian, in love with the BFF),Freak Show by James St. James (unexpected love, hilarious, heartwarming, GLBT), Talk by Kathe Koja (self-acceptance, school play), 
Orange - Name Me Nobody by Lois-Ann Yamanaka (friendship, family, sexuality, and identity, middle grade, set in Hawaii), Birds on a Wire by Ellen Mulholland (three friends, a secret > test of friendship, GLBT, set in the 90s), Angry Management by Chris Crutcher (misfits; about insecurity, anger, prejudice, love, freedom, power and hope), Mousetraps by Pat Schmatz (friendship/bullying, homophobia, illustrated), The Arizona Kid by Ron Koertge (summer, small town, horses, GLBT), Choir Boy by Charlie Jane Anders (trans, bittersweet, humor, middle grade), Kiss by Jacqueline Wilson (best friends, growing up/"changing", first love/heartbreak), M or F? by Lisa Papademetriou (gay or straight - that's the question), Great by Sara Benincasa (retelling of The Great Gatsby)
Yellow Asher's Fault by Elizabeth Wheeler (GLBT, photography, family; divorce, death), Exile by Kevin Emerson (LGBT family member), The Difference Between You and Me by Madeleine George (more lime than yellow but oh well, lesbian, secret relationship, opposites attract), Three Friends by Myron Levoy (bisexual characters(s?), love triangle, oldie but goodie - 1984), Tyler Buckspan by Jere' M. Fishback (set in the 60s, forbidden love, sports, mediums/con artists), Crush by Carrie Mac (summer, New York, love & and acceptance), Empress of the World (Battle Hall Davies #1) by Sara Ryan (summer program for gifted kids, bisexual?), Bi-Normal by M.G. Higgins (bisexual male MC, opposites attract), When We Were Good by Suzanne Sutherland (Toronto, underground music, misfits, lesbian)
Green George Crossing Lines by Paul Volponi  Maze Cheat by B.R. Collins (bisexual(?), trans(?) bullying), Maze Cheat by B.R. Collings (coding, gaming, bisexual(?), PoC), 7 Days at the Hot Corner by Terry Trueman (HIV/AIDS, homophobia, baseball), The Before Now and After Then by Peter Monn (twins, music(?), friends, a life-changing event), My Heartbeat by Garret Freymann-Weyr (messy love "triangle", bisexual(?)), My Side Of The Story by Will Davis (humorous story about "growing up and coming out", GLBT), What's Not Broken by D.J. Parker (coming out/to terms, "story of life and love and loss." GLBT), Dive by Stacey Donovan ("psychological novel full of clarity and a strange beauty", lesbian), Getting Somewhere by Beth Neff (abuse, delinquents, LGBT adults, juvenile detention program on a farm)
BlueStick by Andrew Smith (bullying, abuse, GLBT, brothers, best friends, road trip), In Mike We Trust by P.E. Ryan (secrets, family, GLBT), The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun Hutchinson (survivor guilt, bullying, death(?), partly graphic novel, set in a hospital, GLBT, 2015), If We Shadows by D.E. Atwood (trans, female to male, musical, fantasy), Promise Me Something by Sara Kocek (accident in family, to be friends with the popular kids or to choose the outcast?), The Boy's Own Manual to Being a Proper Jew by Eli Glasman ("Set in the orthodox Jewish community in Melbourne", "painful and funny story about secrets", religion), My Awesome/Awful Popularity Plan by Seth Rudetsky (friends, lies/scheming, humorous), The Kid Table by Andrea Seigel (family, gay cousin), Out by Laura Preble (a society where opposite-sex couples are forbidden, religion)
Purple Lord of the White Hell by Ginn Hale (fantasy, GLBT), The Boy in the Dress by David Walliams, Quentin Blake (illustrator) (middle grade, humorous, cross-dressing, trans themes), Tumble Turn by Doug MacLeod (told via e-mails, middle grade), (Re)cycler (Cycler #2) by Lauren McLaughlin (urban fantasy, MC - girl- turns into a boy once a month and they have different personalities), Not Otherwise Specified by Hannah Moskowitz (bisexual?, poc?, labels, stereotypes, identity), Will by Maria Boyd (school musical, friends?, humorous), Drama by Raina Telgemeier (graphic novel, middle grade, theater), Is He Or Isn't He? by John Hall (New York, prep school, light contemporary, probably similar to M or F?), Happy Families by Tanita S. Davis (twins, transgender parent)
Black to Gray The Suicide Year by Lena Prodan (depression, suicide attempts, military kid), Out by Joanna Kenrick (short story), Homo by Michael Harris (GLBT, coming out/coming to terms), Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey (Maori myths, urban fantasy, asexual), Cevin's Deadly Sin by Sally Bosco (cross-dressing, identity, bullying, gay deprogramming camp, religion), Big Big Sky by Kristyn Dunnion (sci-fi, lesbian), The Boys From Manchester by J.T. Holden (friendship, sacrifice, supernatural, superheroes, young love), Returning to Shore by Corinne Demas (summer, island on Cape Cod, angst, family), Silhouette of a Sparrow by Molly Beth Griffin (summer of 1926, a "young woman's discovery of the science of risk and the art of rebellion, and the power of unexpected love")

Have you read any of these books? 
Are there any that you would recommend? 
Any that sound up your alley? 

2014-07-01

[LGBT Challenge 2014] July Link-Up

Hey peoples! July is here! Wow, it's hard to believe that we are now halfway through the year and the LGBT Challenge!! It looks like things have slowed down a bit, there are only a handful of reviews in last month's link collection, but I'm hopeful that the enthusiasm for LGBT books will spark up again and not fade out. Ever. Or at least not until the end of the year ;) *whispers* The more posts I see at the end of the month, the happier I will be, and the happier I am, the bigger that month's giveaway will be.

June was a pretty good month for me. I reviewed two LGBT books, Otherbound and Fan Art, which might not seem that much, but seeing how I closed May with zero LGBT reviews, I say, I deserve a round of back patting or cookies. Or both.

I also mentioned some LGBT books in one of my Mental Health Awareness Month posts (the one with that long list of recommendations) and even made a rainbow of YA QUILTBAG books ('cause Pride Month!). And yesterday's post - Chat with Anna Frost: Portrayals of LGBTQIA Characters in Japanese Media (Anime/Manga) - is jam-packed with LGBT deliciousness. Go me~

How was your June YA LGBT-wise?

This and that:
1. Sign-ups are open until Nov 30, 2014, feel free to join in any time throughout the year. Just sign up here, make a sign-up post (and link it below!) and you're good to go.
2. Please only link up YA (and shounen ai, shoujo ai) reviews. (YA Non Fiction is okay, too)
3. July is REWIND Month. You can discuss any topic that you missed or just want to do again (February: Things I want to see (or see more of) in YA LGBT fiction March: LGBT YA Covers June: Community & Support)
4. Last month's winner's - Angie's - surprise book was Silent by Sara Alva. And the winner of June is...
Congrats, Brin! I'll be emailing you with details.


Happy reading! I hope y'all continue to enjoy the challenge! 

2014-06-30

[Blog Tour & Giveaway] Chat with Anna Frost: Portrayals of LGBTQIA Characters in Japanese Media (Anime/Manga)

To celebrate the release of The Fox's God (the last book in the Kitsune Trilogy) author Anna Frost is holding a blog tour (with a giveaway!), and this being the last stop, we prepped something special for y'all. Today I am thrilled to have Anna join me for a chat on the topic of portrayals of LGBTQIA characters in Anime and Manga a topic we both like to ramble on and on. Grab a beverage, this is going to be a long one~

Chat with Anna Frost: Portrayals of LGBTQIA Characters in Japanese Media (Anime/Manga)

Anna: Shall we proceed by category? G and L are up first! There's a lot of Japanese media in the yaoi (M/M) and yuri (F/F) genres but I find that those works are often plagued with questionable tropes and stereotypes. They too often try to force same-sex relationship into the hetero mold: one character must me the "man" and the other must be the "woman." 

I'm more interested in media that do no focus on same-sex pairings but happen to feature them in passing. This sort of casual inclusion is somewhat common and makes me happy. Some of my favourite examples would be Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune in Sailor Moon (F/F) and Nezumi and Shion in No. 6 (M/M). I'm also fond of Card Captor Sakura because it hints that Sakura's best friend Tomoyo has a crush on her and also shows a bit of romance between Sakura's brother and his best friend. D'aww.  
Cayce: I haven't noticed this practice in yuri, though I admittedly not well-versed in that genre, but it's definitely true that gay relationships are oftentimes portrayed in a very unrealistic way in yaoi. For example, like you said above; one of the guys is almost always more feminine (on the short/slim side with longer hair and bigger/cuter eyes), while the other's appearance is more "masculine". 

Furthermore, yaoi is full with gay-for-you (straight guys falling for each other) stories, which is a nice fantasy, but it's just that, fantasy. And you could say there's nothing wrong with some harmless fantasy, but that's not exactly the case. 'Cause the sad thing is that those who read only yaoi, might think this is how gay relationships work or should work. But, quoting it from more than one LGBT books, there is no "woman" in a gay relationship. (By the way, if one is looking for some more realistic yaoi, I'd recommend checking out Kano Miyamoto's work. )

I know what you mean! I'd love to see more characters - both main and secondary - that just happen to be LGBT, too. And some great examples there! Sailor Uranus and Sailor Neptune were my favorite "couple" in Sailor Moon and, while I wasn't sure whether they were girls or boys, I also loved the three Sailor Starlights. Okay, I'm still not sure about them, but it doesn't really matter, does it? Also, the scenes between Sakura's older brother and his best friend was one of my favorite parts of CCS. And Nezumi and Shion's relationship was just pure aww~

Let's see if I can come up with some of  my own examples as well... Well, for starters, one of my all-time favorite titles Loveless features both gay and lesbian "couples". (The manga is still on-going but the anime works great as a standalone, in my opinion.) I also have a soft spot for Antique Bakery, that serves some heavy gay undertones topped with lots of yummy cakes.

- don't they look great (both the couples and the cake!)?
Anna: It's not as bad with yuri, but it's still common for one of the girls to wear pants and assume the "manlier" role. Even Sailor Uranus got a bit of that going since she usually dress boyish when not in sailor mode. As you say, there's no woman in a gay relationship, and neither is there any man in a lesbian one. That's sort of the point of same-sex relationships! 

Do you have anything for B? The problem with bisexuality is that it's easily overlooked. Fictional characters tend to have a single love interest and they're categorized as gay or straight based on that single relationship. Most openly bisexual characters I can think of come from yaoi media like Gravitation. One exception: the characters in From the New World appear to be culturally bisexual. There's both same-sex and opposite-sex interest between the five central characters.
Cayce: This is getting increasingly harder. It depends on how you look at it, but I think it's possible that some of the characters in Revolutionary Girl Utena are bisexual. Also, if I remember correctly, Fruits Basket has characters that enjoy flirting with both sexes. But try as I might, other than Touma and Shuuichi (maybe Yuki, too?) from Gravitation, which is one of my all time favorite anime shows - just casually dropping that in here -, I can't seem to recall any anime or manga series with truly bisexual characters. I'm very sad to realise this, but the lack of openly bisexual characters is something that anime/manga apparently has in common with YA. 
- Utena and Touga, Utena & Anthy from UtenaHaru from Fruits Basket
Anna: We're really going to have to work on bisexuality representation. By "we" I guess I mean "me." I'll get right on it. :p 

That brings us to the T! My main beef with the portrayal of transexuals in anime/manga is that the writers don't seem to understand there's a difference between a gay man and a physically male-bodied person who is a woman inside (a trans woman). Being gay is about sexual attraction while being trans is about someone's personal gender identity and how they express it. If gets a bit complicated when you consider male crossdressers (drag queens) because they aren't necessarily gay or trans at all. Most media writers, Japanese or American or otherwise, seem to believe it's all the same.
I'm going to point the finger of shaaaaame at Tiger and Bunny. Most watchers, me included, figured Nathan must be a gay man, because his character shows every. single. stereotype. ever. Nathan is a tall, broad black man who covers himself in pink and glitter. He likes to sexually harass his male coworkers and he calls himself one of the girls. Oh, and his superpower is fire (yes, really). 

Then the show creators said that Nathan considers themselves genderqueer. Damnit, show writers! You don't write a genderqueer character by making them a giant flaming gay stereotype! It's not even clear what pronoun should be applied to Nathan. Is "he" okay? Is "she" better? Are both acceptable? Is "them" more appropriate? Only Nathan knows. 

You should all go watch the show anyway. Nathan is awesome. 
Cayce: Yes, and sometimes (oftentimes?) it seems like they only create those "trans" characters for comic relief. Same with crossdressing. I've seen a lot of male characters wearing female clothes -or vice versa - for solely "fan service" purposes and only a handful of stories where there were actual reasons behind the crossdressing. (And even if we eventually get an answer, most of the time the reason for crossdressing has nothing to do with gender or identity.)

Sure, there are some really good examples out there as well, but they can be quite hard to find. But if someone is looking for more realistic portrayals of trans people, my recommendation would be to start with Wandering Son, which features both transgender women and men characters. And whilst we're on the letter T, I also have to mention another favorite of mine Paradise Kiss, where one of the supporting characters, Isabella, is a male to female transgender. That woman rocks!
AnnaFor the genderqueer side, I propose Haruhi from Ouran High School Host Club. While her crossdressing as a guy is largely used as a setup for humor, her attitude towards it makes me believe she really is comfortable in either role. When the club boys first realize the guy-in-shapeless-clothes isn't exactly that, they react with shock and she answers that she doesn't mind if they think of her as a boy. She keeps the same attitude throughout the series. On top of that, Haruhi's father works as a drag queen. He says that he's bisexual but gender-wise it isn't entirely clear where he stands on the spectrum.

Here's an example of a straight guy who crossdresses purely for fun: Kuranosuke in Princess Jellyfish. He likes to put on wigs and elaborate feminine outfits because he wants to be a fashion designer. He eventually admits to himself that he's developing feelings for the awkward, fashion disaster girl who is the main character.

Going beyond the LGBT letters, what have we got? I'd like to mention the fox spirit in Our Home's Fox Diety as a potential genderless person. Kugen shifts from human boy to human girl at will and while we most often see them as a girl, they also tend to use male pronouns. It's not clear whether these fox spirits have genders in their true form. 
Cayce: Oh, we have a lot more, under that rainbow! And it's a sad fact that there are many pockets of the QUILTBAG that are still hidden and underrepresented in both YA and manga/anime. Though some characters appear to be a bit gender blind when it comes to romantic feelings, I have yet to meet one that actually describes him or herself as pansexual. And what about those who are questioning, undecided and/or asexual? Where are those characters "hiding"? Nothing seems to be taboo anymore -which is both a good and bad thing-, so I think it's time for these characters to get their stories told as well.

And to end this on a brighter note, let's close with the letter I! I can't say that I have seen countless stories with intersex characters (quite the opposite!), but I do have two manga I'd like to highlight: IS: Otoko demo Onna demo nai Sei (Inter Sexuality: The Gender that is neither Male nor Female) and After School Nightmare. Both are wonderful stories, but while IS is very realistic and touching, After School Nightmare is more otherworldly and psychological. They are apparently quite lesser-known (IS especially), but I hope this will change and similar stories will emerge in the near future.
Anna: I hadn't heard of either IS or After School Nightmare. Shaaaaaame. But now I know to look! 

On that note, for those of you who might like to check out some of the anime we mentioned, look on Crunchyroll.com for No. 6, From the New World, and Our Home's Fox Diety, and look on Hulu.com for Sailor Moon, Fruit Basket, Tiger and Bunny, Ouran High School Host Club, and Princess Jellyfish. Netflix likely has a lot of these as well. I'm not aware of any similar services for manga, sadly. Check your local library's collection. 

How about you? What's your take on the topic? Have you read/seen any of the titles we mentioned? Or what other anime/manga have you seen/read that featured LGBT+ characters? How were they portrayed? Good? "Bad"? Realistic? Not so realistic? 

The Fox’s Mask by Anna Frost
Blurb
Demon hunter Akakiba keeps many secrets from his human companion. The fact he’s a werefox isn’t the worst one. 

In feudal Japan, magic is dying. As a demon hunter, Akakiba finds this problematic. The evil he’s been trained to destroy is disappearing and, along with it, the shape-shifting abilities of the clan he left behind. With his only companion, a determined young human named Yuki, Akakiba traverses the country slaying demons and performing odd jobs. 

But when an army of demon possessed humans masses to exterminate his clan, Akakiba must put aside old feuds and protect his family–all while hiding an important secret from Yuki. Will they find a way to defeat the demon possessed before it’s too late? With magic dwindling, will it matter either way?
Amazon - B&N - Smashwords - Goodreads

Are you still here? Then to thank you for reading our rambling, here is a giveaway for you! Good luck~
a Rafflecopter giveaway
2014-06-28

[RandomAsia] Future Obsessions

RandomAsia
- where I fangirl over J-rock, J-pop, K-pop, Anime, Manga, Asian cinema and other Asian related stuffs

Future Obsessions
- looking forward to Summer Season 2014

Summer is the season of ice cream, beaches, watermelons, music and food festivals K-drama and anime. I've been following only two ongoing anime shows actively: Sidonia no Kishi (which ended this week) and Mahouka Koukou no Rettousei, but I just watched the whole Hagane no Renkinjutsushi Brotherhood (so good!), and on the K-drama front, I'm kinda obsessed with School 5 (already finished it but am still looking at pics and GIFs on Tumblr) and King of High School Life Conduct (which has just started airing). And if that's not enough (no it's not!), the summer season will officially start next week and that means ANIME GALORE. Let's take a look at what's on offer! I'm only listing the ones I'm interested in (at least a little.)

Sword Art Online II - "1 year after the SAO incident, Kirito is approached by Seijiro Kikuoka from Japan’s Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications Department “VR Division” with a rather peculiar request...." I really enjoyed season one so I'm definitely watching this. And wow, is that Kirito with long hair?! I think I like the new look avatar! And it looks like they are figthing with guns this time ... Me is excited. - [trailer]

Black Butler: Book of Circus - "It will adapt the Noah's Ark Circus Arc, picking the manga story back up from the point at which they diverged. This arc immediately follows the Curry Contest Arc in the manga, which ended at episode 15 in the first season of the anime." Ciel! Sebastian! Can't wait~ [trailer] And if your haven't watched the first two seasons, *hint* weekends are great for anime marathon watching! *hint*

Zankyou no Terror - "One summer day, a terrorist attack strikes Tokyo. The perpetrators are two boys who call themselves "Sphinx." The attack was just the beginning of the grandiose game they are playing that will envelop all of Japan." - [trailer] - Me: hook, line & sinker. Really, I love everything about this: the art, the plot, the characters (I love antiheroes and 'terrorists playing some mysterious game' fits that bill nicely), the fact that (the evil?) characters' names are numbers - everything!

Aldnoah.Zero - "In 1972, the Apollo 17 mission discovered a hypergate to Mars on the surface of the moon. Soon a war breaks out between Earth and Mars, and Martian soldiers begin to descend from the sky, riding steel giants, intent on exterminating humanity." - [trailer] I love me some good mecha (please, be good!) - There is Shirogane no Ishi Argevollen as well, but the trailer didn't exactly get my blood pumping.

Bakumatsu Rock - "Tokugawa shogunate uses the brainwashing Heaven's Songs by the top idols in Shinsengumi to subjugate the country and its people. In this Japan, writing or singing any songs besides the Heaven's Songs is a capital offence. Sakamoto Ryouma and the other rockers rise up and change the world with rock 'n' roll for freedom and justice." - I'm having a bit of a hard time imagining Sakamato Ryouma as a rockstar, but it does sound pretty hilarious so I'll probably check out an episode or two. - And omg, look at that gitar! *wants* [trailer]

Shounen Hollywood - "It takes place at a fictional theater called Hollywood Tokyo in Harajuku, where members of the idol group "Shonen Hollywood" develop their talents with diligent work and studying." - seems to be a sequel of a novel...  [PV] Again, doesn't sound like something I'd be too interested in, but I like the poster (it looks like my kind of slice of life ~.~) so I think I'll give it a chance.

Tokyou Ghoul - "Ken Kaneki is a bookworm college student who meets a girl names Rize at a cafe he frequents. They're the same age and have the same interests, so they quickly become close. Little does Kaneki know that Rize is a ghoul - a kind of monster that lives by hunting and devouring human flesh. When part of her special organ - "the red child" - is transplanted into Kaneki, he becomes a ghoul himself, trapped in a warped world where humans are not the top of the food chain." - a zombie ghoul romance? [trailer] Yum~ 

Tokyo ESP - "The science fantasy story Tokyo ESP begins with Rinka, an extremely poor high school girl who lives with just her father in modern Tokyo. One day, she is going home from school when she chases a "flying penguin" to the top of New Tokyo Tower—only to have "fish swimming in the air" suddenly appear before her. One of the fish goes through Rinka and gives her extraordinary powers beyond those of normal humans, particularly the ability to slip through solid objects." - I guess this will be about espers but who cares, a flying penguin! And a panda! And so many characters! They had me at the flying penguin though. ;) [CM]

DRAMAtical Murder - "Aoba lives on Hekishima, a small island to the southwest of the main islands of Japan. He lives with his grandmother Tae while working part time at a junk shop. The popular pastimes on the island are the ongoing turf war called "Libstease" and an online game set in the virtual world of "Rhyme." Aoba isn't involved in either, preferring to live peacefully, until one day he is forced into a Rhyme battle." - [trailer] - Hm, this is going to be really good (or really bad.)

Barakamon - "As a punishment for punching a famous Calligrapher, young handsome Calligrapher Handa Seishu is exiled on a small island. As someone who has never lived outside of a city, Handa has to adapt to his new wacky neighbors, like people traveling on a tractor, unwanted visitors who never use the front door, annoying kids using his home as a playground, etc." - [PV], [CM] - This just sounds hilarious.

Glasslip - "transfer student named Kakeru Okikura, who claims that a voice from the future talks to him"  - Slice of life sci-fi with a girl who wants to be a glass artisan and a mysterious boy? An unforgettable summer? [trailer] Sounds worth checking out.

Ao Haru Ride - "revolves around Futaba, a girl who was in love with a boy named Kō Tanaka in middle school. However, after a misunderstanding, their relationship as friends ends when he transfers schools over summer vacation. In high school, her world is turned around once again when she meets Kō again, this time under the name of Kō Mabuchi." - [trailer] I have a feeling this won't be my thing (slice of life high school drama/romance rarely works for me), and the characters don't sound as unique as in Glasslip, but a quick look won't hurt, right?

Gekkan Shōjo Nozaki-kun - "Sakura Chiyo confesses her feelings to her schoolmate Nozaki. Due to a misunderstanding, Nozaki thinks Sakura is just a fan. She then discovers Nozaki's other identity; a shōjo manga artist. As she gets closer to Nozaki, she befriends Nozaki's quirky acquaintances who assist him and serve as inspirations for his manga." -  Harem anime is not something I usually watch (the idea is fun, but gets old fast, imo), but I kinda like the sound of this one...

Love Stage - "Izumi [...] loves the manga "Magical Girl Lala Lulu" and dreams of becoming a manga writer himself. One day he is roped into filming a commercial where he wears a dress. Another actor on the set, Ryoma Ichijo, mistakes him for a woman and falls in love at first sight." - I remember not being impressed with the manga, but, but cross-dressing and shounen-ai! [trailer] lalala~ We all need our guilty pleasures ;)

Pretty Guardian Sailor Moon Crystal (TV 2014) - "New Sailor Moon anime commemorating the 20th anniversary of Sailor Moon." - nostalgic reasons. 'Nuff said. [trailer] Okay, honestly I don't actually plan to watch it, but it's still exciting news nonetheless.

What anime are you looking forward to? Or are you watching any good anime (K/J-drama) lately?

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