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Yen Audio Announces Three Future Audiobook Series

For the first time since the news of the Yen Audio imprint was shared with the world, Yen Press has announced new audiobook series at the Yen Audio Panel at Anime NYC. Three fan-favorite Yen On series will have full audiobook adaptations in 2022—Spice & Wolf (March 2022), So I’m a Spider, So What? (April 2022), and Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai (June 2022). Voice actors for the three upcoming audiobook series will be announced at a later date.

Spice and Wolf

Story by Isuna Hasekura

The life of a traveling merchant is a lonely one, a fact with which Kraft Lawrence is well acquainted. Wandering from town to town with just his horse, cart, and whatever wares have come his way, the peddler has pretty well settled into his routine—that is, until the night Lawrence finds a wolf goddess asleep in his cart. Taking the form of a fetching girl with wolf ears and a tail, Holo has wearied of tending to harvests in the countryside and strikes up a bargain with the merchant to lend him the cunning of “Holo the Wisewolf” to increase his profits in exchange for taking her along on his travels. What kind of businessman could turn down such an offer? Lawrence soon learns, though, that having an ancient goddess as a traveling companion can be a bit of a mixed blessing. Will this wolf girl turn out to be too wild to tame?

Spice and Wolf stands out as one of the most iconic light novel series to make its way to the Western world—a Yen Press classic that is remembered as one of the first light novels released by the prolific publisher. The audiobook adaptation of Spice and Wolf is scheduled to debut on March 15, 2022.

Spice and Wolf

So I’m a Spider, So What?

Story by Okina Baba

I used to be a normal high school girl but in the blink of an eye, I woke up in a place I’ve never seen before and—and I was reborn as a spider?! How could something that’s nothing more than a tiny spider (that’s me) possibly survive in literally the worst dungeon ever? Are there no rules? There should be some rules! Who the hell is responsible for this? SHOW YOUR FACE!

So I’m a Spider, So What? has been the breakout Yen On hit of 2021, a light novel series that has become immensely popular following the success of the hit anime adaptation. This fan-favorite isekai filled with comedy, action, and a whole lot of surprises is one of the brightest stars in the current generation of light novels, and it’s on track to be a future Yen On classic. The audiobook adaptation of So I’m a Spider, So What? is scheduled to debut on April 12, 2022.

So I’m a Spider, So What?

Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai

Story by Hajime Kamoshida

Bunny girls do not live in libraries. This is simply common sense. And yet, that’s exactly where Sakuta finds one in the wild. More bewildering is who the bunny girl is: Mai Sakurajima, a girl one year older than Sakuta, famous at their school for her acting career even though she’s currently on break. To top it all off, it seems like no one else in the library can see Mai at all, no matter what she does or…wears. Wanting to find out more about this mystery and maybe get a little closer to this beautiful upperclassman in the process, Sakuta launches an investigation to discover why an unforgettable bunny girl keeps becoming totally invisible.

Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai stands out as one of this generation’s most beloved romance stories in the world of anime and light novels. This tale of attraction and magical realism took the anime world by storm when the show debuted in 2018, with the original light novel becoming equally popular in the English-speaking world following its Yen On release in 2020. The audiobook adaptation of Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai is scheduled to debut on June 14, 2022.

Rascal Does Not Dream of Bunny Girl Senpai

Yen Audio’s Sword Art Online, Overlord, and The Saga of Tanya the Evil Narrators Revealed

Following the June 2021 announcement of actor Ki Hong Lee narrating the Solo Leveling, Vol. 1 audiobook, Yen Press announced the narrators for the remaining launch series of Yen Audio, a newly created imprint dedicated to audiobook adaptations of light novels. These series include adaptations of some of the most popular light novels from Yen On—Sword Art Online, Overlord, and The Saga of Tanya the Evil.

Sword Art Online, Vol. 1 will be narrated by Bryce Papenbrook. Bryce Papenbrook has been a professional voice-over artist since the age of eight and has since starred in numerous roles, including Kirito from the Sword Art Online anime. Additional noteworthy roles include Inosuke Hashibira from Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba and Eren Yeager from Attack on Titan. The Sword Art Online, Vol. 1 audiobook is scheduled for an August 2021 release.

Overlord, Vol. 1 will be narrated by Christopher Guerrero. Christopher Guerrero is a Dallas-based actor who started his career in theater before transitioning fully into voice-over. Since becoming a voice actor nine years ago, he has voice acted in over 100 anime titles, which includes work on the Overlord anime as protagonist Ainz Ooal Gown. Additional noteworthy roles include Gecko Moria from One Piece and Shadow from SK8 the Infinity. The Overlord, Vol. 1 audiobook is scheduled for a September 2021 release.

The Saga of Tanya the Evil, Vol. 1 will be narrated by Monica Rial. Monica Rial has been working in the anime industry for over 20 years and is considered to be one of the most prolific anime voice actors in the United States. Among her many roles, Monica voiced Tanya Degurechaff in The Saga of Tanya the Evil anime. Additional noteworthy roles include Sakura from Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card and May Chang from Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood. The audiobook for The Saga of Tanya the Evil, Vol. 1 is scheduled for a November 2021 release.

To help launch the Yen Audio imprint, Yen Press is hosting a Yen Audio Panel at Virtual Crunchyroll Expo, which will take place August 5–7. The panel will feature samples from upcoming Yen Audio releases as well as a discussion with Solo Leveling director Caitlin Davies and voice actors Christopher Guerrero and Bryce Papenbrook on their work on upcoming releases.

Ki Hong Lee Will Narrate Yen Audio’s Solo Leveling, Vol. 1

Solo Leveling Vol. 1

Yen Audio has announced that their first digital audiobook release, Solo Leveling Vol. 1 will be read by actor Ki Hong Lee. This debut publication in the Hachette Audio/Yen Press collaboration will release July 13, 2021, online wherever audiobooks are sold.

Solo Leveling is a Korean novel series by Chugong. Originating as a webnovel that boasted over 3 million readers, it is the basis of one of the world’s bestselling webcomics, and the popularity of the franchise only continues to grow. The highly anticipated English-language release of the SOLO LEVELING comic in print in March 2021 stands out as North America’s biggest graphic novel series debut of the year, according to NPD BookScan. This soon-to-release audiobook edition, as interpreted by Ki Hong Lee, adds yet another format for existing fandom to devour and to engage newcomers in the adventures of Jinwoo, the “weakest hunter of all mankind.”

Ki Hong Lee is perhaps best known as lead runner ‘Minho’ in the MAZE RUNNER film franchise. Lee also appeared in THE STANFORD PRISON EXPERIMENT, winner of Sundance’s best screenplay and Alfred P. Sloan prizes, alongside Billy Crudup, Ezra Miller, and Olivia Thirlby, and Lee received rave reviews for his comedic work on the Netflix’s “Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt.” Raised in different cultures from Seoul to Auckland, Lee currently resides in Los Angeles, and is represented by 3 Arts Entertainment, Artists & Representatives, and United Talent Agency.

Yen Press announced its worldwide partnership with Hachette Audio to produce, sell, and distribute digital audiobooks in early 2021, to great acclaim by fans of the formats. Yen Press’s second release is slated for August, when the initial volume of the acclaimed light novel series SWORD ART ONLINE by author Reki Kawahara will be published as a digital audiobook. Voice casting for this upcoming release, as well the Fall releases OVERLORD by Kugane Maruyama and THE SAGA OF TANYA THE EVIL by Carlo Zen, will be announced in the near future. After these initial releases, it is expected that the Yen/Hachette Audio partnership will release regular seasonal adaptations.

Yen Press Announces an Audiobook Partnership with Hachette Audio

Yen Audio

Yen Press has announced a new partnership with Hachette Audio to produce, sell, and distribute digital audiobook editions of select titles. Heading up the program under the Yen Audio label is Publisher and Managing Director Kurt Hassler, who is teaming up with Hachette Audio’s longtime Publisher and SVP Anthony Goff, who negotiated the world rights deal for Hachette Book Group.

Yen Audio will launch four debut titles in Summer and Fall 2021. The first volume of Solo Leveling, a South Korean novel by Chugong originally published online in serial releases and the basis of the bestselling webtoon of the same name, will be the first audiobook in the collaboration, slated for publication July 2021. The second release will take place in August, when the initial volume of the acclaimed light novel series Sword Art Online by author Reki Kawahara is published as a digital audiobook. Voice casting for these titles, as well as for narrators of Fall titles Overlord by Kugane Maruyama and The Saga of Tanya the Evil by Carlo Zen, will be announced soon separately. After these initial releases, it is expected that the Yen/Hachette Audio partnership will release regular seasonal adaptations.

These audiobooks based on Yen Press content will be available wherever downloadable audiobooks are sold, across platforms including Apple Books, Audible, Audiobooks.com, Downpour, Google Books, Libro.fm, Kobo, and more.

TITLEAUTHORISBNUS/CAN DLPEST. RUNRELEASE
SOLO LEVELING, VOL. 1Chugong9781975325886$25.98/$32.989.5 hoursJuly 2021
SWORD ART ONLINE 1: AINCRADReki Kawahara9781975337186$25.98/$32.987.5 hoursAug 2021
OVERLORD, VOL. 1Kugane Maruyama, so-bin9781975337490$25.98/$32.987.5 hoursSep 2021
SOLO LEVELING VOL. 2Chugong9781975325893$25.98/$32.9810 hoursOct 2021
SWORD ART ONLINE 2: AINCRADReki Kawahara9781975337209$25.98/$32.987.5 hoursOct 2021
THE MIRACLES OF THE NAMIYA GENERAL STOREKeigo Higashino9781975338350$25.98/$32.989.5 hoursNov 2021
THE SAGA OF TANYA THE EVIL, VOL. 1Carlo Zen, Shinobu Shinotsuki9781975337452$25.98/$32.9810 hoursNov 2021
OVERLORD, VOL. 2Kugane Maruyama, so-bin9781975338336$25.98/$32.987.5 hoursDec 2021
SWORD ART ONLINE 3: FAIRY DANCEReki Kawahara9781975337216$25.98/$32.987.5 hoursDec 2021
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