Robin E. Brenner's Understanding Manga and Anime

Robin_brenner_as_manga    Manga    Robin_brenner_second_image

(Author Robin E. Brenner in two of her animated incarnations, and the cover of Understanding Manga and Anime)

Ever wondered if there was more to anime and manga than meets the eye? Ever wondered if the fact that these primarily Asian (especially Japanese) art forms come with a different cultural context means they should be read differently? Librarian, author, former Eisner Award judge, and founder of the website No Flying No Tights Robin E. Brenner provides answers to this question and more in her superb Understanding Manga and Anime. Not only does she include a great capsule history of anime and manga in Japan and the West, she also breaks them into various categories, notes trends, discusses themes unique to both, and provides a recommended reading list. What I especially love about the book are the sidebars, which range from recipes for dessert sushi to unique visual clues in anime/manga, as well as stock character types, rising stars, and popular websites. The information is so well-organized and direct that even readers not interested in manga or anime will find much here to enjoy. And, for an indepth conversation about manga, read my interview with Brenner. - Jeff

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