Title: Azumanga Daioh Omnibus
Series: Azumanga Daioh
Author & Artist: Kiyohiko Azuma
Rating: 5 of 5 Stars
Follows the highschool years of a group of young girls. Slice of Life type manga, with everything from humor to sadness to absolute saccharine sweetness.
The majority of the manga is the 4Koma style, ie, 4 single panel drawings one atop the other, which lends itself to very brief, intense one shots.
However, there are times where Azuma breaks away from this format to tell a slightly more connected story and then you get the typical manga layout.
Loved this, hence the favorite designation. It is light, comedic, fun, easy to digest and just generally a delight to read.
The omnibus collection collects all 4 volumes of the original manga and it is one monster book. I read a copy from the library and they used that special reinforcing clear tape on the spine and on the insides of the front and back cover, to keep it from cracking. It seemed to work and if I ever buy this volume, I’d definitely want something like that, as this is just too big for simple glue binding to handle.
I have to admit, if you had suggested that I would love a manga [and anime, which I do one, by the way] about highschool girls, I would have been very suspicious of you. But the comedy and lack of angsty pathos made this a series that I wholeheartedly recommend to anyone looking to try out this new fangled fad thingy called manga.
The format also lends itself to easing a newb into the whole right to left reading of panels. Good practice for when you’re trying to figure out some of those other more complicated series.
If you’ve read Yotsuba&! and liked it, you’ll definitely enjoy this ancestor of it. And if you like this, you’ll definitely want to read Yotsuba&! next.