Viz breaks out a new Yu-Gi-Oh! series this week: Yu-Gi-Oh! Zexal, which features a new hero, Yuma Tsukumo, and a new set of challenges. You may be familiar with this iteration already, as the anime runs on The CW's Toonzai. Like many Shonen Jump heroes, Yuma starts out not being very good at what he does—in this case, playing the augmented-reality game Duel Monsters—until he gets an unexpected boost from a spirit named Astral. Yuma and Astral team up to retrieve the 99 Numbers cards, which contain Yuma's hidden memories, vying against Numbers Hunters who want to claim the cards for themselves—and wreak havoc. The first editions of volume 1 contain a limited-edition collectible game card—look for the shrink-wrap!
If you're not a Yu-Gi-Oh! fan, Viz still has plenty to keep you busy this week, with a bumper crop of Shonen Jump volumes. Vol. 11 of Bakuman sees the two would-be manga-ka prepping their new series for its Shonen Jump debut. Viz has two volumes of Bleach, vols. 40 and 41, this month, and they span a single battle between Ichigo and Ulquiorra. Also up this week: Vol. 9 of Nura: Rise of the Yokai Clan, vol. 22 of Slam Dunk!, and vol. 10 of Toriko.
Viz has just one Shojo Beat volume this week, vol. 2 of The Earl and The Fairy, which, as I observed in my notes on volume 1, has more earl than fairy to it but is nonetheless intriguing; this volume takes our heroes to an island surrounded by menfolk, which should be interesting.
Finally, Viz has vol. 5 of Pokemon Adventures: Diamond and Pearl Platinum and vol. 2 of Voltron Force.
Seven Seas debuts the Alice in the Country of Clover, the sequel to Alice in the Country of Hearts. Country of Hearts was one of Tokyopop's more popular series in its declining days, and Yen Press will release the original series in three omnibus volumes later this month, but this week you can pick up the stand-alone Alice in the Country of Clover: Bloody Twins this week. This seems a bit darker than Country of Hearts; check out the preview at the link. Also up from Seven Seas this week: Vol. 12 of Dance in the Vampire Bund, the Vampire Cheerleaders/Paranormal Mystery Squad Monster Mash Collection, and the omnibus edition of vols. 1 and 2 of Witch Hunter.
Finally, Dark Horse and Kodansha Comics have one new volume each: vol. 11 of Neon Genesis Evangelion: The Shinji Ikari Raising Project and Vol. 6 of Bloody Monday, respectively.
New Manga for the Week of May 23: A Good Week for Otaku