Sporadic Sequential
Monday, September 24, 2007
Death Note is Dead! Long Live Death Note!

Others have already noted that the Death Note anime and live-action films are making their way to U.S. shores, but browsing through Amazon today I noticed some upcoming releases sure to interest Death Note fans. The first is Death Note: Lethally Fun Facts, Mysteries and Secrets Revealed, an unofficial guide to the series put out by DH Publishing, who describe the book as follows:
In this first-of-its-kind guide to this exciting story, DHP's Japanese researchers have dug up little-known facts and behind-the-scenes info that are certain to surprise even the most ardent of Death Note's English-speaking fans.
According to the info on Amazon, the book was scheduled to come out on September 15th but it's still listed as for preorder as of today. [DH Publishing also puts out unofficial guides for a number of other popular manga/anime series, including Bleach and Naruto.]

Next up is something even more interesting: It looks like Viz will be publishing the 13th volume of Death Note, titled Death Note: How to Read. According to the description on Amazon, this book is "[a]n encyclopedic guide to the Death Note manga series, including character bios, storyline summaries, interviews with creators Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata, production notes and commentaries, and bonus manga pages." Based on the price, this looks like it's only the book itself, not the deluxe collector's set containing: a case that doubles as a box for all 13 Death Note volumes as well as a diorama of the setting of the series' final showdown; replicas of Near's little figurines; and a number of other goodies. Perhaps Viz is planning on releasing that set as a separate special collector's item or as a deluxe version of the book.

According to Amazon, Death Note: How to Read will be released February 19, 2008, a date that will also see the release of Death Note: Another Note, a prose story detailing an earlier case of L's:
There’s a killer loose in Los Angeles and super-sleuth L is on the case. Along with Naomi, a former FBI agent, he helps the LA police solve the grisly crimes. In typical Death Note fashion, things get complicated. And there’s a big surprising plot twist at the end of the book.
Presumably Viz will be beefing up that release copy before the book is heavily publicized.

UPDATE: An old post on ComiPress has more details on the contents of the How to Read Japanese edition. I'm assuming all of the contents will be available in the English translation, which would help explain why Volume 13 is priced at almost twice as much ($14.99) as the earlier volumes ($7.99). I mean, isn't a special card revealing the true name of "L" worth an extra eight bucks???

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