Calling All Manga Fans! Join the Manga to Anime Club.
With a new year comes a new book club. Naomee McKiddy, the Alexandria Branch’s adult/teen services programmer, is launching the Manga to Anime Club.
The concept? Geared for teens ages 13 and up, members will read the first volume of a manga series and then discuss both the manga and anime. McKiddy has long been a fan of manga, a style of Japanese comics; that’s partly the inspiration behind starting the club.
“There was never a focused book club for manga. I know a lot of teens that watch anime, too,” says McKiddy. “If you’ve either read the manga or watched the anime, you can still come to this club and talk about it.”
Now in her 20s, McKiddy first got into manga as a teen. One of her first manga loves was Pokémon Adventures, which just so happens to be the club’s pick for April. McKiddy says one of the great things about manga is that it’s an easy way of absorbing a story.
Later in the interview, she gives a nod to Komi Can’t Communicate, one of her current favorites (and June’s book club pick). The series follows Komi, a high school girl with social anxiety, as she works toward her goal of making one hundred friends.
“I wanted to get a good mix of newer (series), like Spy x Family is a fairly recent one people are getting into, and also wanted to include older ones in there, like Fruits Basket,” says McKiddy. “I’m interested to see how the teens will react to an older manga; I know the art style is a little different than now.”
As a teen, McKiddy attended library programs (including book clubs!) at CCPL. Now a programmer, this marks McKiddy’s first time leading a book club. Seeing that process through on her own has been gratifying.
“A patron in her early teens/tweens, rode her bike up here,” says McKiddy. “She saw that we had a manga selection and got really excited. She took an entire series and checked it out, which I was really happy to see. So, I took the opportunity to tell her about the [Manga to Anime Club].”
She also used Goodreads to help narrow down her list of the first six titles. The dates, ordered January to June, are as follows: Spy x Family by Tatsuya Endo; Fruits Basket by Natsuki Takaya; My Hero Academia by Kohei Horikoshi; Pokémon Adventures by Hidenori Kusaka; Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba by Koyoharu Gotouge; and Komi Can’t Communicate by Tomohito Oda.
All club dates are held at 4 pm on the second Wednesday of the month. Light snacks will be provided. Register at cc-pl.org/events.