Slayers fans will soon have a new way to experience the series' original source material.
As reported by The OASG, publisher J-Novel Club, which is a division of Kadokawa that specializes in localizing Japanese light novels into English, announced its plans to release audiobook versions of its localization of the classic Slayers fantasy novels. These new audiobooks will be narrated by Lisa Ortiz, the veteran voice actor who voiced the series' central protagonist, the powerful but conceited mage Lina Inverse, in the Slayers anime's original English dub. The audio books will mark Ortiz's first return to the Slayers franchise since the anime series aired its fifth season in 2009. In addition to voicing Lina, Ortiz is known for voicing Moe Kamiji in My Hero Academia and for various roles throughout the Pokemon franchise. A premiere date for the audiobooks was not announced.
J-Novel Club has announced at their ANYC panel they will do an audiobook version of Hajime Kanzaka’s The Slayers, narrated by the English dub voice of Lina Inverse, Lisa Ortiz pic.twitter.com/1fLR6F9uK4— TheOASG (@TheOASG) November 20, 2021
Slayers began in 1989 as a fantasy-parody novel series by author Hajime Kanzaka, with illustrations by artist Rui Araizumi. The series tells the story of the adventures of Lina Inverse, a young magician who has mastered the use of the incredibly destructive Dragon Slave spell. During the series, she is joined on her various quests by Gourry Gabriev, a himbo swordsman who is descended from a legendary monster slayer. The two are also frequently accompanied by Amelia, a princess who aspires to be a hero, and Zelgadis, a magician who has been cursed with a monstrous appearance. Kanzaka and Araizumi continue to work on the series to this day, with the most recent volume being released in 2019.
The series is best known outside of Japan through its 1995 anime adaptation, which was extremely popular in Japan and achieved a cult-following in North America following its original localized release on VHS and later DVD. The anime's first three seasons aired consecutively from 1995 - 1997, then the series took a decade-long break before returning in 2008 for an additional two seasons. All seasons of the anime were directed by Takashi Watanabe, who is also known for his work on the anime adaptations of Boogiepop Phantom and Shakugan No Shana. In addition to the anime, the series has also been adapted into multiple manga series, as well as several video games.
The Slayers anime series is currently licensed by Funimation and is available for streaming through the company's subscription service, or on Hulu. The original novels are available in English in both print and digital formats from J-Novel Club.