Graphic novels and Manga has long been a medium of reading that I have enjoyed reading. Though some might deem it to be puerile and debate whether these books can actually be considered literature, I’ve discovered many meaningful and in some instances educational stories through this means of storytelling such as my current read; Monster by Naoki Urasawa;
I read the complete first volume of this suspenseful manga in one breathless sitting and I was completely hooked from the very outset. This manga is set in the mid 80’s shortly before the fall of the Berlin Wall, separating what was formerly known as East and West Germany. Dr. Kenzō Tenma is an extremely promising young doctor who migrated from Japan to Düsseldorf, West Germany, intending to further his studies in medicine. He soon realizes how political a profession he has when he refuses an order from the head of the doctor’s association by saving the life of a young boy. Monster had me on edge the whole way through and seamlessly probes the boundaries of morality.
Below are the most recent Graphic novels and Manga reviews I’ve added to my website. Please click on each image to read a short summary and review. If you’re a fan of graphic and visual storytelling, then never fear because I have more recommendations coming soon!
Fence – C.S. Pascat, Johanna the Mad, Joana LaFuente, Jim Campbell
Fence is a young adult sports graphic novel that follows the story of Nicholas Cox, the illegimate son of a former fencing champion. Nicholas may come from humble beginnings but he possesses a heady determination and spunkiness that drives him to follow in his estranged father’s footsteps. Fence Vol. 1 was published in 2018 by BOOM! Box.
They Called Us Enemy – George Takei, Justin Eisinger, Steven Scott, Harmony Becker
They Called Us Enemy is a graphic novel memoir about the life of George Takei, famously known for his most pivotal role, Hikaru Sulu from Star Trek. In this stirring novel, Takei relives his personal experiences as a young boy during WWII when hundreds of thousands of Japanese American citizens were forcibly detained in internment camps. They Called Us Enemy was published in 2019 by Top Shelf Productions.
Wotakoi: Love Is Hard For Otaku – Fujita
Wotakoi: Love Is Hard For An Otaku is about a group of workmates who struggle to form romantic relationships because of their OTT obsession with all things gaming and anime. Because of their lack of social skills, neither of them have found much success in the love department and so they decide to become an item themselves. Wotakoi was published in 2018 by Kodansha Comics.
Heartstopper – Alive Oseman
Heartstopper is about the blossoming romance between two teenage secondary school boys; Charlie and Nick. Charlie is an openly gay brainiac who wears his heart on his sleeve because of the traumatising experiences he’s had with homophobic bullying. He meets Nicholas, or Nick for short, whom he feels an instant connection to, but Charlie fears that these feelings won’t be reciprocated. Little does he know just how much of a liking Nick has taken to him. Heartstopper is a web comic that began in 2016 and is still ongoing today. The edition pictured was published in 2019 by Hodder Children’s Books.
Antique Bakery – Fumi Yoshinaga
Set in Tokyo, Antique Bakery is a temptingly lavish affair run by three men. Yusuke Ono is a prodigious chef and playboy who was once cruelly rejected by Tachibana, the boy he had a crush on in high school. Several years later and the two find themselves working together in the same bakery, along with the short-tempered former boxer, Kanda. Through the everyday running of this bakery, we learn more about each of the characters and salivate over beautifully illustrated cakes. Antique Bakery in 2005 by Digital Manga Publishing.