The word ‘manga’ can be literally translated as ‘humorous pictures’. Manga refers to Japanese comic books. These books often form the basis of Japanese cartoons or anime. It has become a huge part of Japanese culture.
In recent years, manga has become quite popular outside of japan as well, due to the beautiful art, various genres and adorable characters.
Whether you are new to reading manga and looking to be introduced to the manga world, or whether you are simply looking for a new series, here is a list of some of the best, latest manga books. So, read on and choose your poison.
Dragon Ball: A Visual History
The Dragon Ball franchise is one of the most successful ones ever. This book follows the history of the franchise ever since it started. It goes year- to- year, showing mostly full- colour images.
It is a treat for people who are especially interested in the art aspect of this series. The art progresses all the way up till 2013 and the movie Dragon Ball Z: Battle of the Gods.
After that it continues with original cover collections for the graphic novels, and the original cover collections for the updated editions.
A Tropical Fish Yearns For Snow
This is the story of Konatsu, a shy and reserved girl, who’s about to start a new school in a new town. With her dad getting a job overseas, and an aunt who only checks in from time to time, she’s basically on her own.
Konatsu is drawn to Koyuki, an older student who heads the club that runs the aquarium.
Konatsu is doing her best to adapt to her new school, but being required to join a club is an additional pressure.
Kaede, her classmate invites her to join the Home Ec club, but Konatsu has yet to decide which club she is interested in. Will she finally join the Aquarium Club?
Our Wonderful Days: Volume 1
This is a yuri series about two best friends, Koharu and Mafuyu, reconnecting after years. Mafuyu moves away to Tokyo. She comes back after several years and is now attending the same high school as Koharu.
As the girls explore their hometown, Koharu starts to develop a crush on her childhood best friends.
Art is an important aspect of the book. It shows an attention to detail in both the background, as well as the characters. The story is continued in volume 2 of the series.
The Way of the Househusband
This is a fictional comedy about a former yazuka member who leaves his old gangster life to become a househusband. He was called ‘The Immortal Dragon’, the fiercest member of the yazuka. Yet, he decides to walk away, to walk on the path of a househusband.
He is a caring man who wants to take care of his wife. The story makes fun of the intensity the main character brings to simple chores. His lack of understanding about how he comes off as a gangster make the plot even funnier.
This is a book about lesbian couples living together.
Each chapter is about a couple and the problems faced by them. It highlights the fact that living together can either make or break a relationship, but patience and love can bring out the best in a couple.
The book tries to normalize same- sex relationships with the stories about lesbian couples just living their lives; doing everyday chores.
They are like anybody else, they just happen to be in a same- sex relationship.
For the Kid I Saw In My Dreams
This is a story about revenge. Thirteen years ago, Senri watched his entire family being murdered in front of his eyes, hiding in a closet his twin brother had put him in.
Now, he is obsessed with finding the man who killed his beloved brother, the one who protected him from his abusive father.
The brothers were so close that they used to share visions when one of them was in pain. The only clue he has is the final vision he and Kazuto (his brother) shared- a man with a scar on his arm that looks like kanji for ‘fire’.
My Hero Academia
This is a superhero story with a bit of twist- almost everyone in the story has some kind of superpower. But, most of the superpowers are weird and do not seem to be particularly useful.
Then comes the entry of Izuki Midoriya, also known as Deku. He has no superpowers himself, but obsessively studies about this world, and knows everything about the superheroes.
When the greatest superheroes of the world notices him, he bestows his superpowers on him. That’s when Deku’s life changes and he gets into UA, the elite superhero academy. The story is basically about strange villains that the students battle against using their superpowers.
This story focusses on the sport of diving. It is about Tomoki Sakai, a second year in junior high and a member of the Mizuki Diving Club. Tomoki has loved diving since the second- year elementary school, but now the club is in the danger of being shut down due to its lacklustre records.
The new diving instructor Kayoko Asaki thinks she can help. The clubs needs someone to qualify for the Olympics, but with only a year left, the divers will have to work extra hard to save the club. The book makes for an intriguing read and promotes character development among kids.
I Married My Best Friend to Shut My Parents Up
This story is about Morimoto, a young professional woman in Japan. She is tired of being questioned by her parents about her being single. They want her to find a man and settle down.
In an unexpected twist, another woman in her office- Hana, her friend from high school who has a crush on her, offers to be her wife in a fake marriage, to make her parents back off.
The marriage ends up contributing to Morimoto and Hana’s relationship. Morimoto supports Hana’s professional goals and understands when Hana won’t be able to help around the house as much.
Morimoto’s home life transforms with her acceptance of what she really wants, while her professional life also improves. Her experiences with Hana help her to identify and fulfil her deepest desires.
Komi Can’t Communicate
This is a story about Shoko Komi, a socially anxious high school student. Her greatest dream is to make some friends, but everyone at school mistake her social anxiety for cool reserve.
The whole student body keep their distance from Komi, and she believes that friendship might forever be beyond her reach.
Tadano is a timid wallflower, but that changes when he finds himself alone in a classroom with Komi on the first day of high school.
He soon realizes that she is not reserved or aloof, she is simply awkward.
He decides to help her on her quest to make 100 friends.
Komi and Tadano’s friendship is endearing, and Komi’s difficulties with socializing are a source of comedy, without her being the subject of ridicule.
Bottom line is, it is a great comic with a lot of heart and promise.