Holiday entertaining with sushi style!

Sushi SimplicityIn Sushi Simplicity, Miyuki Matsuo goes beyond the ordinary sushi roll and proves that anyone can make these gorgeous pieces of food art that taste as good as they look. By mastering a few techniques, beginners and experienced chefs alike can create nearly 80 eye-popping, mouth-watering morsels that can easily be adapted into festive, holiday-party treats.

Start with temari or “ball sushi.” Matsuo explains the fundamentals of forming rice into these cute spheres, and then suggests a wide range of toppings. Decorate the snowy white balls with cucumber and tobiko (flying fish roe), bright red tuna with a sprig of dill, or goya (bitter melon) and ikura (salted salmon roe) and they’ll look like colorful tree ornaments, especially when you serve them on a Christmas-tree platter.

Try making pressed sushi using cookie cutters shaped like stars, bells, snowmen, and trees—then top with ingredients in seasonal colors: diced red pepper, mentaiko (spicy cod roe), pickled red radish, green and black olives, edamame, parsley, snap peas, kinome (pepper leaf) or mint.

To really impress your guests, arrange small rice balls in a circle on a plate. Adorn them with cherry tomatoes, sliced white cheese, fresh dill, or whatever combination strikes your fancy—and you’ve got Wreath Sushi. If it weren’t so tempting to eat, you’d want to hang it on your front door!

In the “Cup Sushi” section, you’ll learn how to use small bowls, stemmed glasses, plastic cups, and even halved hardboiled eggs and cherry tomatoes as serving dishes. Present your sushi creations in elegant champagne glasses and toast the New Year with unique flair.

Fantasy Unleashed

From the New World vol. 1In 2006, Vertical introduced the English reading world to Yusuke Kishi. Already an established horror and science-fiction author having earned a number of awards in his native Japan, Kishi’s star has begun to rise exponentially as of late. Not long after the English release of his work Crimson Labyrinth, Kishi’s works would reach new heights with the release of From the New World. This two-part fantasy novel would take the sci-fi and fantasy world by storm, culminating in the author receiving the Japan Science-Fiction Grand Prize in 2008. Now a few years later, Vertical is proud to release the manga adaptation of this renowned work, penned by Toru Oikawa.

In From the New World Kishi introduces readers to a dystopian future. Mankind is near its brink, and society has declined over the past thousand years. However, even though the population has been decimated, over those many years humanity has developed something that may eventually prevent it from losing more ground – magick. Akin to ESP but much more advanced, magick is a form of psychokenisis that has developed in most of this era’s youth. Magick protects the small communities that remain from enemy attacks; it aides in technology development; and is critical to the education of those who survive.

In this first volume of the manga series, readers will follow a group of six youths as they begin their magick training. While their exams are not very complicated, how they each are able to control their abilities will eventually determine their futures in this world were only the strong are allowed to survive.

Rendered with detail, and purposed for action and excitement by Toru Oikawa, the From the New World manga brings the prose of Yusuke Kishi to life as we have never seen before. It is a must read for fantasy readers and shonen manga fans alike!