There’s thousands of series out there, so sometime it’s hard to figure what to view. Here you will find a list of recommended manga series so you can narrow your search down! We will continually update this page to add series we feel are worth checking out.
Bakuman, created by the mangaka of Death Note, depicts behind the scenes action of the manga publishing world through the story of two high school boys, Takagi and Mashiro. Takagi discovers a sketch created by Mashiro of Azuki, a girl he likes, and convices Mashiro they write and illustrate a new manga series together. They share their dream with Azuki who hopes one day to become the voice actress for their series as an anime. Quite by accident Mashiro asks Azuki if she’ll marry him, and she replies yes, but only if their dreams comes true. Now they must pursue those dreams in earnest!
Bakuman is a great slice-of-life manga series that is very unique and entertaining! View here
Nana tells the story of two girls by the same name, Nana “Hachi” Komatsu and Nana Osaki, and their move to Tokyo with big dreams. Although these two young women come from different backgrounds, they quickly become best friends in a whirlwind world of sex, music, fashion, gossip, and all-night parties! This series is about as modern as they come in terms of fashion and life in an exciting city. The art is fantastic and more importantly the characters are full of emotion that create an unforgettable story.
The bottom line is Nana is one of the best shoujo series to have come out in a long, long time! View here
Fullmetal Alchemist, created by Hiromu Arakawa, is one the most popular shonen series ever made. And for good reason; it’s a compelling story about two brothers, Edward and Alphonse Elric, who are trying to regain their original bodies after disobeying the laws of alchemy. The anime felt lighthearted compared to this deeper, darker manga series. If you’ve seen the anime, forget about what you think you know and check out the manga because you will be in for a surprise!
Fullmetal Alchemist is a manga series that shines a lot brighter than its anime counterpart (which wasn’t bad at all either!) Any fans of the anime definitely have to check out the manga: View here
Best friends Mikan and Hotaru grew up in a small town in the remote countryside. When Hotaru moves to a school for geniuses in Tokyo, Mikan misses Hotaru so badly that she decides to travel to Tokyo herself to find Hotaru. She finds Hotaru in a school called “Alice Academy,” and finds that the school is actually for people with special powers called “Alices.” Narumi-sensei, a teacher at the school, discovers that Mikan also happens to have an Alice, and Mikan is admitted into the academy. At first, she becomes enemies with a boy with a fire alice but later becomes friends throughout the anime. There she finds friends, love, and a life that she will never forget.
Gakuen Alice is a must-read for any shoujo fan! View here
Ready for one the longest running manga series? Hajime no Ippo currently spans over 800+ chapters! It’s a series about life as a boxer, friendship, rivalries, and achieving a goal. The story follows Makunouchi Ippo, a high school senior who is weak and constantly bullied. His life turns completely around when he meets Takamura, a professional boxer. Ippo is in awe at the sport of boxing and in order to find out what it means to be strong he starts his path towards becoming a boxer.
Hajime no Ippo is a series for everyone, not just people interested in boxing or fighting series. It’s much more than just that. It is home to some of the best, most unique characters in all of anime, and at times is flat out hilarious! View here
Berserk is considered the best, most-epic manga series ever made by many anime fans including us here at Manga Lyght. You can look at every important aspect that makes a series good, such as characters, story, and artwork, and you can make an argument that Berserk is the best when compared to other series. Probably the only draw back of becoming a Berserk fan is the mangaka takes his time in creating the story, and once you catch up to story arc you’ll be waiting months for a new chapter. Still, we feel the wait is worth it! Once you view this series it will change your perspective of what manga is capable of.
Berserk is an amazing read and one that we feel every manga fan should check out! View here
Vagabond tells the story of the legendary samurai known as Miyamoto Musashi. Musashi’s goal is to become an invincible swordsman and he has a ton of raw talent and potential to achieve it. Of course along the way he will be put to the test. The story isn’t very complicated as this is an action series at its best. The mangaka, Takehiko Inoue, who is also famous for Slam Dunk and Real, puts so much effort and detail into his artwork that very few series can compare to it.
Vagabond’s artwork is amazing, the characters are complex, and this series is a simply a must-read. View here
Vampire Knight is a Shoujo series that mixes the lust of vampire lore with a complicated love triangle. The story is about Yuki Cross, her childhood friend Zero, and the very unique school they attend. The Night class is actually filled with vampires! Yuki and Zero’s goal is to act as guardians of the Night class so no one finds out about the vampires.
Vampire Knight is a series you either love or hate. If you hate it, you probably aren’t the demographic for it. If you’re a girl who likes vampires and Twilight, you may very well love this series! View here
Beck: Mongolian Shop Squad is a great example of a Shonen series that doesn’t need to resort to amazing super powers to be good. Instead, it focuses on realistic characters that form a music group with a goal to become not just great, but legendary. Along the way you will see references to famous rock stars that really add to the series’ music motif. It’s not just famous characters, but also first images of chapters that have Beck parodied album covers and more.
Beck is about more than just music – it’s about striving to achieve something, overcoming adversity, and friendship. View here
Created by the legendary mangaka Naoki Urasawa, 20th Century Boys claim to fame is all because of it’s brilliant story telling. Multiple story threads all flow like water to create one excellent and memorable series. This series is a great example of how much deeper (plot and character development) a Seinen can be compared to everything else out there. The story revolves around Kenji and his childhood friends as they try to figure out a mystery and try to prevent the foreseen from happening.
You can read hundreds, maybe thousands of manga series in your life and not run across another series as good as 20th Century Boys. View here
Fruits Basket is a rare series that is enjoyed by anyone who reads it. If you’ve got a heart beating in your chest, we can guarantee you’ll like this Shoujo series. Boys, girls, men, and women love what many consider to be one of the finest Shoujo series ever made. Fruits Basket tells the story of Tohru Honda and the peculiar Sohma family that has a very unique secret. The family also has lots of problems, but nothing a very determined Tohru Honda can’t solve!
Fruits Basket mixes a unique story, comedy, and plenty of drama to form a very touching series that every manga fan should read. View here
Sakurakouji Sakura is a girl who appears modest and graceful but in reality is skilled in martial arts. After witnessing a boy burning people with his blue flame, she is startled to see that the same boy is a transfer student, Oogami Rei. Oogami is a Code Breaker, one who “does not exist”. He is a seemingly cold-blooded killer who follows the principle of “an eye for an eye”, to “use evil against evil”. Convinced that killing is not right, Sakurakouji sets out to stop him and penetrate his icy heart.
Code Breaker is an entertaining series with some very cool characters. View here
Nodame Cantabile is a highly recommended Josei series. Characters usually make or break a series, which is where this series shines; it features very likable well-developed characters. Nodame Cantabile is a romantic comedy that puts two complete opposite people together. Both Megumi Noda and Shinichi Chiaki are talented in music, but that is where their similiarities end. Megumi Noda, also known as Nodame, is very messy, disorganized, and couldn’t care less about how she smells. Shinichi Chiaki comes from a musical family, is very arrogant, and is also a perfectionist. Well, you know what they say: opposites attract!
Parasyte is about worm-like creatures from space that have come to Earth to take control over a human. Sound like a bad made-for-TV movie? The premise and idea behind the series sounds shallow, but it’s actually original in terms of manga stories. The plot is very well developed, balancing between fighting other parasites and dealing with the world coming to grips with the sudden violence outbreak. Shinji, the main character who has his hand taken over by an alien creature (as opposed to his brain), has learns from the creature about the other aliens’ ability to take over humans and create havoc. Shinji is now obligated to stop them to save his loved ones and humanity!
Parasyte is a quick read that has a definite ending unlike many other manga series out there. View here
At first glance, Here is Greenwood looks like many other high school romantic Shoujo comedy series. But you’ll quickly see that it’s unlike any other comedy you’ve read before! The story follows Kazuya and his rather depressing life – his brother just married the girl of his dreams, so he leaves to move into an all-boys’ dormitory. There he meets some strange folks… strange being a big understatement! Among the strange people are a person living with his motorbike, a guy who looks exactly like a girl, and of course your patented girl ghost.
Writing the synopsis for Here is Greenwood was a lot of fun – it makes us want to read it again. Shall we? View here
Gantz has quickly become one of the most popular Seinen series ever. And for good reason. Forget about the unique artwork, the interesting character designs, and awesome battles – no, Gantz is all about the story and setting. Very few series can even come close to this series’ tension throughout each chapter. The characters’ have no clue what’s going on, the enemies are simply nasty, and it all adds up to a series you can’t stop reading. Unlike Shonen series where you absolutely know the hero will prevail, in Gantz anything goes!
Gantz is a unique mature series that demands your attention! View here
Angel Densetsu is the story of Kitano Seiichirou, your typical teenage boy. Unfortunately for Kitano his face is very monstrous and makes everyone around him think he’s either a drug addict or a tough son of a gun. Kitano moves to a new school where because of his tough-looking grill, he is immediately thought of as a fighter. He quickly proves himself by taking on and beating people at his school, and from there he ends up taking on other schools. This a series that doesn’t take itself too serious – the opposite in fact, it’s a great comedy!
Angel Densetsu is a hilarious and quirky high school comedy! View here
Tough is a Seinen manga series that revolves around Kiichi Miyazawa, a 17-year-old teenage high school student and his father, Seiko Miyazawa, who is training him in the family’s secret martial art, Nadashinkage-ryu, a fighting style that was created around the end of the Meiji Era Japan. The style itself uses punches, kicks, throws, grappling, as well as knowledge of striking pressure points and vital points on the human body. With a passion for martial arts, Kiibo is striving to become strong by testing his skills against various fighters from different areas of Japan, as well as the world, via street fights and tournaments.
Tough is an exciting action packed series that won’t dissapoint! View here
Rurouni Kenshin is a Japanese manga series written and illustrated by Nobuhiro Watsuki. The fictional setting takes place during the early Meiji period in Japan. The story is about a fictional assassin named Himura Kenshin, from the Bakumatsu who becomes a wanderer to protect the people of Japan. Watsuki wrote this series upon his desire of making a shonen manga different from the other ones that were published in that time, with Kenshin being a former assassin and the story taking a more serious tone as it continued.
This series is still one of the best samurai manga series ever made. It combines great fights, humor, and a great cast of characters to create an unforgivable series. View here