Here you will find 4 new short stories composing the newest 12 Kingdoms novel translated. Starting with Hisho no Tori. It appears the last short story isn't fully translated yet, but surely that will come in time. 3 of 4 short stories completed isn't bad, even if that's all we ever get. The important thing is we're finally getting new 12 Kingdoms. This is a fantastic series let down by both the author and the anime industry. First, the author goes on a fifteen year hiatus without resolving any cliffhangers she's set up originally. Then we get an anime so full of filler it's practically worthless. The only people who come out smelling roses in this tale is our diligent fan translation community which translated all the original books in their full glory so that people have access to the full, true story, in so far as it has been written.
The previous 12 Kingdoms novels can be found translated here: http://eugenewoodbury.blogspot.com/2009/04/the-twelve-kingdoms-novels.html
If you still need to catch up. This includes novels that were never animated by the anime.
Having finished volume 11 of Hataraku Maou-sama, I went to the translator's original site to see what progress is being made on the remainder of the story. The translator is still active and there's also more good stuff coming out in this vein as well:
So there's still a ton of short stories to read even after volume 11, and volume 0 is slated to come out soon as well. I'm sure volumes 12-16 will be dealt with eventually too, someday.
Tomoyo After Story Memorial Edition has come out, which supposedly has major changes from the previous fan translated non-memorial-edition version, so it might be wise to check out this visual novel in its new form as well.
Jun Maeda has finally recovered from his hospitalization. Having heart failure at only the age of 41 is really tragic, just like all the key stories he's written. It seems like he was fated for something like this. Like the author of PapaKiki, it seems like God has it in for all the best of us while not caring at all how long rogues like Fidel Castro survive.
We are now three episodes behind in Mahoutskai Precure, so I took it off the currently airing list and added it to my eagerly expected releases list instead. Like the Wake Up, Girls movies, all we can do is hope and pray for a translation from here on.
The Tales of Zestiria the X anime looks brilliant, as you would expect from UFOtable, and is using the great music from the game as its soundtrack. But the plot is completely nonsensical and has already deviated from the original game's. I can only hope something worthwhile comes of this.
Love Live! Sunshine was predictably good, both beautiful and funny, just like the previous recipe.
Once all these short stories are dealt with it'll be back to Unlimited Fafnir. There's no point reading Baccano currently because the epilogue of volume 10 still isn't translated, and hasn't been for half a year, and volume 8-10 is all one continuous story. This holdup effectively rules out reading the whole rest of the series, because there's no point worrying about 11 when 10 still isn't done. Which means that if I can just finish Unlimited Fafnir, my quest to read all the light novel series in my good books post which are translated and don't have an anime adaption will be complete. Perhaps by the end of the year?
Speaking of endings, Bleach has announced that it's coming to an end. However, it's been coming to an end for quite some time now. It still has many bankais it hasn't shown yet, so it can't be allowed to end any time soon. I will be most unhappy if Hirako Shinji never goes all out throughout the entire series despite losing a million fights he could have won if he had just gone bankai. This plot hole most of all needs to be corrected before the ending. I doubt Bleach will end anytime this year at least. But when it does, it will be the first major manga to end. Even Dragon Ball is still going under the name Dragon Ball Super. Naruto has its Bolt sequel. One Piece chugs along eternally. Fairy Tail is still going strong. Hayate hasn't managed to wrap anything up despite trying. Zettai Karen Children looks to be going into a long flashback arc. UQ Holder still has lots of mysteries to reveal. Saki's endless mahjong tournament will never end. Freezing feels like it's just gotten started. Akatsuki no Yona has plenty of mysteries left to reveal. And Rito still hasn't chosen a woman in To Love-ru. Berserk, Bastard and Guyver all started in the 80's and none of them are close to done either. As far as I can tell, no manga ever ends. Even Card Captor Sakura has returned from the dead with a new arc. Bleach might be the harbinger of a revolution, however. It feels like the shoe is going to drop on a lot of major series in the next few years and we're going to see the climactic conclusion to a ton of epic, long running series all at once. Bleach will be the first, but it won't be the last big name series to bite the dust.
And this time, unlike Nichijou or Brynhildr, we'll actually get said ending translated. A great series, fully translated, actually reaching its natural end. (unlike Kenichi which just randomly ended in the middle of everything.) What a day that will be. And if other series follow suit like a bunch of dominoes, what a year that will be. It looks like manga, not anime, is the big story of 2016, not to mention 2017 and beyond. . .