Manga at the library.

Just visited my neighborly library (I’m now officially hooked on Jasper Fforde’s books, and Lemony Snicket is oddly enticing as well). About six months ago they set up a “graphic novel” section - essentially a single shelf. Every time I looked at it, it contained only the more artsy comics - Art Spiegelman and his more pretentious mates. However, today I take another look and there’s exactly four manga volumes there.

Two are Hellsing.
Two are Megatokyo.

I am in bliss. I know not of Hellsing (nor am I interested in knowing it, the whole vampire/goth thing turns me off) but I’m a diehard fan of MT, which is the closest I, as a Westerner, will ever get to a manga written expressly for me. MT is the only manga I own, in fact. Props to the Toronto Public Library in putting it out there.

…In fact, looking at the online library catalogue, it looks like there are no less than 16 copies of book 1 floating around the library system. Woo!

I haven’t been to my county library in a while, but last time I was there, they had a decent sized collection of manga, maybe equivelent to two or three shelves. I can’t tell you what type they were, though, because I’m not really into manga much, except for MegaTokyo, which I only recently discovered.

My library had a grand total of one four-sided tower of manga. (In total, anywhere from 5-15 books) But I haven’t been there since January, so I couldn’t say if it’s still like that. I got to read the first book of NGE and a fair bit of Tokyo Mew Mew that way, but it was largely useless because I insist on reading the books in order, and they rarely had Volume 1 of anything.

I’m glad to hear that graphic novels are being accepted as worthwhile reading material by libraries, and I hope that the (good) ones are spread around. Comics taught me to read, and led me to reading books. ^^

I’ve always been a library mouse. My elementary school library had a wonderful collection of Sci-Fi stories from the early days of the genre, from some written for kids to others that explored far more serious subjects, like the true meaning of being human. While I was often frustrated by the latter (characters usually got killed, or otherwise defeated) they helped me to look at life from different angles. Too bad the librarian was a real bleep.

During high school, I had few pickings both at the high school library and at the Cabo Rojo public library. Heck, they never even painted the public building! And one day they just “moved” it elsewhere. (I never found it again, so I guess they just CLOSED it but didn’t want to admit it. Far as I know, we still don’t have one.)

The college I went to had a HUGE library, and I loved going there, but I had precious little time for casual reading.

Today, I think of the Net as a the world’s largest library, and often surf just to find info on whatever strikes my curiosity at the moment. God bless Wikipedia!

And now that they’ve opened a Border’s nearby, you can bet I go there to ‘browse’ often! (If I had a car I’d go there EVERY DAY.) They have TONS of graphic novels, including mangas!!! :slight_smile:

I hope that our local school libraries currently have a good selection for the new generation of students.

PS: I know nothing about Megatokio. Why do you say it was written for an occidental audience? And why is it so good?

Borders is the way to go for purchasing Manga offline. Barnes and Noble is a good place too, but I’ve always found that Borders’ selection is superior to B&N’s.

MT started off solely as a webcomic ( It was written by an American, which is why I say it’s meant for an American audience. :sunglasses: Nothing lost in translation here. It’s a really great read - funny, but there’s a lot of great insights into emotions, life and whatnot. It doesn’t go at a breakneck pace (which is why three comics a week seems like so slow for people) but there’s great art and dialogue. There’s a lot of cool in-references in geek culture and whatnot, so I enjoy it a lot. It’s a real rags-to-riches dealie… not many webcomics get published. You can still read the entire thing online if you like, but the server’s pretty slow.

I should note that when I got my MT volumes 1 and 2 in the mail, I had that tingly feeling that I haven’t had probably for about eight years, when I used to love getting Nintendo Power in the mail. :sunglasses: And that’s even though I’d already read the entire thing! Reading it online is just not the same as having something tangible to page through.

Cid, first off: Fuck you for not wanting to read Hellsing.
Saying you don’t like a manga because of the “whole goth vampire thing” is bullshit, but that’s your perogative. I saw the anime and have read a few of the manga, and it’s quite a good story.

Anywhom… I personally haven’t read much of megatokyo, but I do know my school library actually carries a few manga. I found it weird, because it’s actually one of the more perverted ones. I forget the exact name, as I’ve not been able to procure a copy of it, but it’s apparently quite popular.

Eww, megatokyo. But to each his own, i guess.

My library carries alot of Miyazaki’s stuff, like nausicaa, and adaptions of his movies. They also carry Yaoi. They have Gravitation, FAKE, and all that stuff. One of the librarians must be an otaku :stuck_out_tongue:

They’re more into American graphic novels, which is ok, because i like them better than Manga anyway :stuck_out_tongue: They have alot of American Splendor, which is what i’m reading now. Its really good, and so is the off-shoot “Our Cancer Year”. Another good one i just read is “Palestine”, which is a graphic novel about what it is like to live in the west bank. Really moving stuff. Maus was pretty good as well, i just finished that.

EDIT: OH! If any of you have the chance, read “Short Program”. I can’t recall who it is by at the moment, but it is an AMAZING manga. Its a collection of short stories in Manga form. Its more shoujo than i normally can stand, but its presentation is awesome. The stories are really compelling as well. They had it at my library, which is why i brought this up :stuck_out_tongue:

Steve: You’re right, it’s my prerogative. I’m sure there are plenty of good stories out there, but every story comes with a style and background, and if the style makes me uncomfortable, then I won’t enjoy the story no matter how good it is. Swearing at me won’t change that (nor will it ever be effective in getting people to listen to you).

Ehm, I wasn’t trying to get you to change your mind. I was expressing my disappointment due to the fact that you’re taking it at face value only, but like I said, it’s your perogative.
I don’t swear for any other reason than it’s what I do to express my points. I could concoct some huge rant involving a bunch of useless information, or I could lazily express my distaste in your opinion by easily saying a phrase. I don’t do it because it’s my only option, I do it because it’s wasteful to do anything else a situation such as this one.

they have tons of mangas at my library, all the trigun, except they dont have the hellsing seriestear and plenty others. Why buy therm when u can just go to the library.

And now that they’ve opened a Border’s nearby, you can bet I go there to ‘browse’ often! (If I had a car I’d go there EVERY DAY.) They have TONS of graphic novels, including mangas!!! :slight_smile:

I couldn’t agree more with you there,I visit it as much as I can(Basically when I have money)and almost always leave with someting,my only complain:I can never find Berserk 1,2,and 3,Hellsing 2 and Petshop of Horrors,besides that it’s wonderful.

Well, at least you buy something ,which is better than the people who just show up, abuse the books, and leave.

I’ve been pleased that the county library system’s been getting more manga. It’s been a positive experience, even though a lot of the items have wait lists (more people reading manga, yay!). I stopped following MT a while back (the website commentaries were just bugging me), but it’s nice to see that sort of success for a humble webcomic.

Now, I like Hellsing, but I feel it’s overrated. The novels are kinda boring for me to read, since I spend about half of the time flipping a page, seeing a bunch of gore and carnage, thinking “Oh, another two pages of gore and carnage”, and flipping on again. I only stop to read the dialogue - there’s certainly not much admiring artwork on my part. Cid, I really don’t think you’re missing anything there.

Also, Borders is the offline place to go for buying this stuff, especially since they have a “Buy two, get the third free” offer. The only drawback for me is tripping over middle schoolers while trying to look at what’s on the shelves. I’m not kidding.

Vicks, you don’t have to read the rants. The comic more than makes up for it. The dynamics are really something to see. :sunglasses:
And thanks for the vindication.

Oh, but Cid, the first thing I’d see at MT before the comic was the rant! My eyes were drawn to it much the way they’re drawn to Family Circus… I must fight long and hard to avoid allowing myself to see it! :smiley:

Then just buy the books. 8p No rants in there.

Well, our libraries around here doesn’t have much manga. The only thing I’ve seen so far is in Umeå city library which is about 90 kilometers from here, and that was a few number of a very thin fanzine that someone at the library had gotten at a comic market or something…

But the bookstores have got a lot more though. I’m currently buying Ranma½ and, of course, Megatokyo.
We also have two magazines specifically for manga and lots of other series that I haven’t read yet.

You gotta love good libraries, who’ll custom-order whatever the fuck you want instead of saying “That’s all we carry, sorry sir.”

We have a decent sized Manga collection at my library ranging from DBZ (eww) To very good ones such as Ah! my goddess, and numerous one akira and such I’m too busy reading my collection to remember. >>;