Adventures in Collection Development

Hola, amigos. Sorry I haven’t rapped back at you for a while.  Been working on a few things at MPOW which have left little time for extracirrucular activity. I’m hoping to get back into this blog soon, with some more content and (hopefully) a brand spanking-new theme.

But my job is not all nose-to-the-grindstone technology work and Virtual Services development. To provide a teensy bit of balance, I’ve been purchasing the teen and adult graphic novels at the library. This has been an experience – on one side, I get to play Kid In A Candy Store and stock on all the trade paperbacks I’ve never quite gotten around to reading. On the other hand, it’s serving as a harsh reminder of how little I know about manga, which of course is the most popular genre of all of them by far.

(And yes, I realize that manga isn’t a genre per se. There’s a huge amount of diversity in the field, from artwork to subject matter to characters to everything in between. But we do have our patrons who simply ask for manga, and end up walking out of the building with an armload of different titles.)

Luckily, I’ve got the new New York Times Graphic Novel Best Seller Lists to fill in some of the gaps:


I’m not sure if this makes the collection job harder or easier. It certainly makes my understanding of Naruto more hilarious.

  • maria

    naruto is classic boy who is special though he comes from average upbringing adventure story. pretty much along the lines of dragon ball and one piece which are both also put out by jump, i think. personally i was a fan of the death note series which you probably have or should have. yotsubato is a really fun one, the first five books are out in english i believe, you would like it. if you want some of my not so indepth, but sort of present manga knowledge let me know. i can always ask my kids for the trends, not sure if you are more heavily looking into boy manga, but there are also a lot of cheesy and great girl oriented manga, i really like xxxholic for its slightly goth and hilariousness…

  • Toby

    Those are all good suggestions, and I’ve been keeping current with most of the uber-popular titles. It’s a tricky exercise, finding the right balance of shonen and shojo stuff. Lately I’ve been finding that the balance swings from one side to another month to month. This might have more to do with release schedules than anything else, though. I have kept an eye on your goodreads ratings, so many thanks in that direction.

    It’s also tricky to decide when to start a new series, as it essentially means that I’m committing myself to that entire run. In order to do that, I have to make sure it’s not going to throw my budget out of whack (which makes it nice that I can see how many volumes have been published in Japan, so I know what I’m in for), and if I’m playing catch-up on a series, that the older volumes are still in print. Lots of stuff to keep track of, and the spreadsheet that aids me in this process keeps getting bigger and bigger.

    If you’re interested, you can see the newest additions to the collection for adults and teens via their RSS feeds.

  • maria

    cool. i just finished watching the melancholy of haruhi anime, definitely recommend it for you and jordan if not the library as well. most excellent.

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