Manga-ka Kazuma Kodaka drew nearly five hundred fans to a signing sponsored by Be Beautiful at the Kinokuniya bookstore in Rockefeller Center, a record for a graphic novel event at the store. Ms. Kodaka is a pioneer and top-ranked artist in the yaoi genre. Her series, Kizuna-Bonds of Love, which is available in the U.S. as part of CPM's Be Beautiful line, is the best-selling yaoi manga series in the history of Japanese publishing.
The yaoi genre has become increasingly popular in the U.S. in the past year. Known for its unflinching depictions of love between impossibly beautiful men, yaoi manga appeals primarily to women in large part due to its engaging characters and deep romanticism. Judging from the crowd that lined up for autographs from Ms. Kodaka, yaoi's appeal in the U.S. is also primarily to women. Only two males showed up among the throng waiting to meet the author and they both said they were just there to get autographs for a female fan.