So this year I started a lot of (for me) comic series. This is interesting to me in retrospect because up until perhaps 2013? 2012? I read a lot of comics, including single issues. But then I stopped due to money issues and frustration with the comic industry. Prior to that, in high school, I read a lot of manga and read the weekly Sunday strips. So really, the years I spent not reading comics were more flukes than the years I read comics?
What changed then? I think accessibility and my mental state. For the bulk of this past year I’ve been pregnant. For those of you who have never been pregnant – there are definite days when your brain decides it’s on vacation while your body loses what little mind it had. So I spent a lot of time wanting to read something, anything, but not knowing what to pick up. I’m not sure when I decided to look into comics but I started down the hole and now here I am.
This isn’t to say that comics are easy reading, but that the double input of the imagery with the storytelling is something on a different level than simple prose. It can be just as easy or as heavy as a novel, but your mind can rest on the images and that little assistance while reading is just what I wanted.
I also have become very adapt at finding cheap and/or free reads in the past year. Money is not a thing I have a lot of so I’ve gotten creative – all within legal means of course, I am staunchly against pirating – and as such have even found ways of reading comics and manga easily. The main one of these being Prime Reading and abusing my Library for all it’s worth.
So what series am I reading? A few! Again, not a ton for a real comic reader but for me this is a lot.
- Fruits Basket – My sister loved this series as a teen but I turned my nose up at it. As the ‘older sister’ it was clearly beneath me. I wish I hadn’t now, it’s both sweet and profound at times.
- Ouran HighSchool Host Club – This series is absolutely insane. That’s really all I can say about it. I don’t enjoy it nearly as much as Fruits Basket but I can get these from the library and they are fun, so I’ve continued through the series.
- Demon Slayer – I literally just started this as I can read it through the Shonen Jump app I downloaded (2 dollars a month for all those manga chapters?! Yes please!). But so far I’m enjoying it.
- A Bride’s Story – These absolutely intricately drawn, and I love the historical setting and look at cultures that I’ve not learned anything about. If you enjoy historical style books or comics with no magic or supernatural – these are for you.
- Pokemon Adventures – The graphic novels the games and show are based on – and guys this is wildly different. I 100% recommend reading these if you’re a fan of Pokemon at all.
- Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: City at War – I’m a few issues behind on this. I need to play catch up, I might work on that next month when I’m sleepily feeding a newborn. But I was super interested to see who/how the new Turtle was coming into the mix. I was super enjoying the arc even jumping in right at City at War.
- Star Wars: Doctor Aphra – Another series I’m behind on, but I also jumped on board late. I think I’m three volumes in now? It is, so far, highly entertaining and I love following a ‘bad’ character. Aphra is such a shit.
- 5 Worlds – A recent addition to my reading list but I adore the color and artwork on this. I plan on picking up my missing volumes as soon as I return to work in the spring. I can’t wait. It’s also a surprisingly heavy plot with climate change and politics taking the center stage.
- Hilda – I think this series might be at a close? I’m still waiting to see, as I’m all caught up with what’s published but my husband and I loved the Netflix show so my friend bought me the comics and those are just as good.
- Phoebe and Her Unicorn – I love these Calvin and Hobbes-esque style comics about a little girl and her sassy unicorn friend. I’ve unfortunately hit a wall on these however since my library has run out, but I plan on picking these up as well in the summer for myself.
There are a lot of comics I’ve tried and DNF’d, and others I’ve finished as they’re one or two shots. I’d like to keep this steam up in the year to come. Any recommendations on comics to pick up or thoughts?