Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Bulgarian versions of Naruto, One Piece and Death Note

 I know that this is quite a belated post, but I have been really busy with university and other personal stuff and I hadn't had any time to write in the blog, even though I really wanted to. So today's post will be all about the Bulgarian versions of the Japanese mangas Naruto, One Piece and Death Note.
 The first volumes of Naruto and One Piece were published in the autumn of 2012 and the first volume of Death Note was published in the end of October 2013. They were all published by Artline Studios. For now on out market we have volume 1 to volume 5 of Naruto, volume 1 to volume 4 of One Piece and volume 1 of Death Note. They are all translated from Japanese language to Bulgarian language. Naruto and One Piece were both translated by Maire Buyuklieva (Майре Буюклиева) and Death Note was translated by Slavi Georgiev (Слави Георгиев).
 First I will talk about the things I didn't like and then I will talk about the things I liked about the Bulgarian editions. I will talk about all of the mangas, because they have basically the same issues. The main topic of this review will be the Bulgarian edition and not the story of the manga.
 So first of all the volumes look pretty nice with their dust jackets, but when you remove the dust jacket you can see the hard carton cover of the book. I find it too thick for such a small book. It's hard to bend and if you push it a little bit too hard you might tear it. Most of the Japanese addition manga I have, have a soft carton cover, which makes the book easy to open and read. I think that this hard cover wasn't the best choice of the Bulgarian publisher.You can see the examples on the both sides of the text and below is the image of how the cover almost tore.
  Second, I think that there was a problem with the printing of volume 2 of both Naruto and One Piece. As you can see on the side there are stripes in the screen tone that should not be there. However, as you can see on the picture below, this issue has been resolved, which is nice.
 The last thing I want to mention is the translation. I think that I found this problem only in Death Note. The particular example I have is with the word "shinigami". The translator decided to keep the original Japanese word in the translation, which is not bad, I actually think that this was the right move. However, this is a word that appears on the first page of the manga, literally in the first text bubble. Most of the Bulgarians (who aren't anime fans or aren't studying Japanese) don't know what this word means. True, it becomes clear that shinigami is a death god in the first volume, but the Japanese reader is aware of what it means in the begging. I think that there should have been an explanation under line or something of the sort for that one. 
 There are many that I liked about the Bulgarian editions
 First of all I'd like to mention the size. They are all exactly 112x176 mm, which is the original size of Japanese manga. It's smaller than the size of the English edition, but I personally like it better.
 Second, I loved the dust jackets. This is also a feature of the Japanese manga, which the English edition usually lacks. 
  And third, I really liked Maire Buyuklieva's translation. I have done translations for university and I know how hard it is to translate onomatopoeia and some more specific Japanese phrases, but she has really done it quite well. There is also an explanation of every single kanji that appears on any page, which I appreciated a lot. 
 True, it does sound a little weird, when I read manga in Bulgarian, but I think that that is only because I'm not used to it.

 In conclusion I'd like to say that in my personal opinion Artline Studios are doing a great job and I'd really like to see more manga translated and published in Bulgaria. Also, I will be collecting Naruto and Death Note, but I won't be buying One Piece any more, because it's definitely not my cup of tea (as you can see I only bought the first three volumes and I read the forth one, because a friend gave it to me).
  For more information visit on these mangas the following link - Artline Studios


  1. Nice review,but the one thing I realy didnt like was that there we"re no colored pages...I know that some mangas have once in a while one or two colored pages and I saw a few in Naruto but here they were just black and white

    1. Tankoubons (the normal manga size) such as these usually don't have coloured pages. The coloured pages are used only for the magazine, if the certain manga is main for the certain issue. And there can be some coloured pages in the special editions of the manga.
      Besides, if there were coloured pages in the Bulgarian version the price would have been higher.

    2. This comment has been removed by the author.

  2. Hi there Hikari.
    Just found your blog while investigating for a portuguese film. Sounds strange, I know.
    Was wondering if you could help me with one specific thing needed for that film.
    How could I get in touch with you so that I can explain precisely what I´m looking for? It´s a bit urgent.
    Thank you in advance!

    1. Hi, my e-mail is Send me an e-mail and I'll see what I can help you with.

  3. Hello Hikari!
    Thank you so much for your response.
    Just sent you a mail. From
    Looking forward to hearing from you.

  4. Where can i buy the bulgarian version (naruto) ?