Full-color, digitized version of "One Piece" released



The market growth for e-books in Japan is still way behind when compared to that of the US, but there have been some peculiar cases of success lately.

One of the hottest issues among those is a digitized version of One Piece, originally a Japanese shōnen manga series written and illustrated by Eiichiro Oda. It has been serialized in Weekly Shōnen Jump since August 1997 and Shueisha published its individual chapters in soft cover format. The first one was released in December 1997 and 67 volumes have been released so far with a record total of two hundred and seventy million copies in print to date.

Last June, Shueisha's release of the full-color, digitized version of the One Piece series aroused massive enthusiasm among its fans. Japanese mangas are usually printed in black and white format to cut printing costs. However colorizing digital versions is free of charge, so the publisher took advantage of the service. The full-color, digitized versions of the One Piece series have won the hearts of not only of its fans but of brand-new readers as well.

Koji Chikatani
Senior agent
Japanese Writers’ House
(Source: Nikkei Shimbun, 16 August 2012)