The Kodansha Comics Gift Guide
Are you looking for the perfect gift for your manga loving friends and family? It can be hard to choose in a sea of series, but this year we’ve got you covered with curated selections for everyone on your list!
Part I: For Your Favorite Geek Girl
Girls and women who are passionate about their hobbies have been an integral part of the manga fandom for decades, and we’re proud to publish series that aren’t just for them, but about them too! Here are four series to show the geeky ladies (Or guys! Or nonbinary friends and family!) in your life that you appreciate them quirks and all.
Princess Jellyfish (Ages 16+)
What’s it about: The shy and jellyfish-obsessed Tsukimi Kurashita lives in Tokyo with an eccentric group of fellow otaku, but a chance meeting with a beautiful and fashionable woman shakes up her comfortable life! This odd encounter is only the beginning of a new and unexpected path for Tsukimi and her friends.
Why is it good? If there’s ever been a series that’s an anthem and celebration for geek girls, it’s Princess Jellyfish. This was our most highly-demanded title on social media before publishing, and it’s easy to see why! From shy but creative Tsukimi to the bold and brash Kuranosuke, there’s a character for everyone here. The lives of the girls of Amamizu-kan are portrayed with sympathy and laugh out loud humor, all with a strong message of self-empowerment and embracing your passions. See why Anime News Network called it “One of the most honest, and funniest, stories about not quite fitting in!”
Princess Jellyfish volumes 1-3 are available from Kodansha Comics!
Complex Age - Ages 16+
What’s it about: Twenty-six-year-old office temp - and secret cosplayer - Nagisa Kataura must figure out how to balance her all-consuming passion for her hobby with the increasing pressures of the adult world.
Why is it good? Cosplay is a fast-growing and inclusive activity in fandom, but it’s hard to find fiction that dives deep into the subculture. Complex Age is an intimate look at the insecurities and triumphs that come with cosplay, and Nagis’a struggle to balance her adult responsibilities with her hobby is a problem that will resonate with many young adult readers. Yui Sakuma spares no detail in her portrayal of the ins and outs of cosplay - there’s even a glossary of terms! This is the perfect book to give to the cosplayer or cosplay-curious person in your life.
Complex Age volumes 1-2 are available from Kodansha Comics, with volume 3 coming in December!
Kiss Him, Not Me - Ages 13+
What’s it about: Kae Serinuma is what you might call a fujoshi - a girl who can’t get enough of manga and anime that’s all about beautiful boys getting friendly with each other! Her life on the sidelines ends when she undergoes a dramatic transformation, but how will she handle the attention of the guys she’s been watching from afar?
Why is it good? If that description makes no sense to you, fear not. If you have a hardcore otaku friend who’s all about pairing boys X boys, this is just the thing for them - even if you don’t get it! BL (that’s boy’s love!) author JUNKO’s first mainstream manga series is a hilarious sendup of fujoshi culture and tropes and has become a cult favorite and even a hit anime. It’s hard to resist Kae and gang’s over the top adventures - and we bet the fujoshi on your gift list won’t be able to!
Genshiken Second Season - Ages 16+
What it’s about: The followup to otaku life classic Genshiken follows a (mostly female!) motley crew of cosplayers, doujinshi artists, and anime fanatics and they get through college life and look towards the future.
Why is it good? Fans of the original Genshiken series know that it’s unrivaled in its realistic portrayal of otaku life, but Genshiken Second Season turns its focus more specifically on the day to day struggles and concerns of otaku girls. This is definitely a series that female manga and anime lovers can see themselves in, and with its college life setting, it’s a treat for older teens and young adults!
Genshiken Second Season volumes 1-9 are available from Kodansha Comics!
Now you have what you need to impress the lovable geeks in your life this holiday season. If you haven’t found what you’re looking for, stay tuned next week for the Kodansha Comics staff picks so you can gift like a manga editor!
Kodansha Comics Gift Guide will update every Friday until the end of holiday season!