Kohei Horikoshi, author of My Hero Academia, has never been one to hide his influences or tastes in manga from public view. He’s been a vocal supporter of such authors as Daisuke Ashihara in the past, but his latest recommendation is a little different: Kohei Horikoshi’s new favorite manga is Isekai Ittara, Sude ni Imouto ga Maou Toshite Kunrin Shite Ita Hanashi (I Went to Another World and My Sister was Already Reigning as the Demon Lord) by Hirofumi Neda, an isekai series that does exactly what it says on the tin.
Often shortened to Isekai Imouto (Isekai Sister), it was previously only available online before publisher Number Nine teamed up with Kadokawa to give many of their series proper volume releases, including this one. To celebrate the release, Neda enlisted the help of Kohei Horikoshi to provide a comment for the wraparound obi: it reads ‘It’s really so cute!!! This is amazing, Neda-san!!!’
At first, it seems a little strange that Kohei Horikoshi would recommend something like Isekai Imouto, as he has only provided testimonials for such action series as World Trigger in the past. Yet, dig a little deeper, and you’ll find the reason why: Hirofumi Neda’s first series was My Hero Academia Smash!!, a spinoff gag manga based on Horikoshi’s original series that was published in both Weekly Shonen Jump and Jump Plus from November 2015 to November 2017.
So, is this pure nepotism? Perhaps, but this isn’t exactly unusual for the manga industry: up-and-coming authors always call in favors from old collaborators and mentors, most notoriously Eiichiro Oda for Nobuhiro Watsuki.
Still, it ultimately remains up to the reader to decide whether Kohei Horikoshi’s glowing praise is deserved or not by checking out Isekai Imouto for themselves. Volume one of Isekai Ittara, Sude ni Imouto ga Maou Toshite Kunrin Shite Ita Hanashi is out now on a variety of platforms.