Manga: What’s With All the Hype?

Hi! I’m Jason, Young Adult Librarian here at the Livingston Public Library. In the past few months I’ve noticed many, many teens checking out armfuls of manga, and other teens who just ignore it all together. So, I decided it might be worth explaining to everyone so that we’re all on the same page (get it? book joke!). Manga is simply a Japanese style of graphic novel/comic book. There are other countries that have versions of this (for example, Chinese “Manhua”), but manga has really become the forerunner in popularity. So, why the popularity? I attribute it to a couple reasons. First, it’s nice to become invested in a series. Same characters, same environment… a continuation of the same story. It becomes a “comfort read.” If you liked the first one in a series, you’ll probably still enjoy the 30th. Moreover, a lot of manga are adapted into anime and vice versa, so that gives more opportunity to stay within that “universe.” For those who don’t know, anime is Japanese animated TV shows/movies. Second, Netflix and other streaming services have been bolstering their anime collections, which make for an easy entry point into anime/manga. For all our manga fans out there at LPL – I have tons of new manga series on order. Stay tuned! Am I missing a manga you think we should own? Email me at! I would love to hear from you! -Jason Weissmann, Young Adult Librarian