I love hunting down manga (you may have noticed in my list of London manga stores). One place I didn’t expect to see it, however, was my local Charity Shop. In my local Hospice shop, nestled under the shelves of terrible biographies and faded cookbooks is the basket. It’s my second-hand manga heaven. Sometimes this basket has random collections of Beano, other times odd issues of Sandman Mystery Theatre. Sometimes, when I’m lucky, it has quality manga.
My own second-hand manga heaven
I can’t remember what made me go into my local charity shop for the first time. Maybe, I was feeling lucky. However, as I scanned through the shelves looking for anything unusual, there was nothing. Turning to leave, I kicked something; it was the basket! I hadn’t expected to find a niche hobby like manga at the charity shop. I would assume that people would give their old volumes to like-minded friends or family, or the more enterprising hobbyists selling their second-hand manga collections on eBay once they have been read. Peering into it, I noticed an assortment of worn comics, but something was interesting underneath the refuse.
Lifting the pile of random comics, all of which had seen better days, I noticed a group of yellowing Tokyopop manga. Most of the volumes were from series I had never heard of before, being reasonably new to the collecting at this point. However, a special something caught my eye. It was the first volume of Kodansha’s Fairy Tail.
Since that day, I always check out every Charity and Thrift store I see encase they have their own basket. Oh and I also check the back whenever I go past the store, some weeks every other day.
October second-hand manga Manga Haul
This month I’ve managed to pick up quite many books and left even more behind. A few random numbered volumes of Death Note have appeared. As you may have read in another post, it’s a series I’ve taken out from my local library. There were more yellowing Tokyopop books. Off the top of my head, I remember the first volume of Battle Vixens being there amongst others. Also, I discovered Biomega, volumes 1 to 3, but, now, it’s just 2 and 3. Still a tempting prospect, maybe, I’ll pick those up. But enough of what I’ve not bought, what have I picked up.
Nine volumes of Naruto
The women serving me said that she had only just put them on display. I timed that trip to perfection. The person donating these must have also dropped off a bunch of Bleach on the same day. Like these, there are around nine randomly numbered books from midway in the series.
I’ve been alternating reading Naruto from the Shōnen Jump app and books from the library. Naruto is my prefered pre-bed reading, it’s gratifying, and it doesn’t require much brainpower to follow along. My preference is to read physical copies, and, sometimes, it takes a while for the next few tankōbon to arrive in the library. Second-hand manga is a godsend.
Although, I have several of the earlier volumes as the 3 in 1s; I thought this was a good deal. Yes, it does make my shelf look a little messy, but I’m a sucker for value. I’ve been checking in quite a lot in hopes that the rest of the collection gets donated.
Sword Art Online – Aincrad
Sword Art Online has always been an IP I was aware of. I have heard talk of the video games and anime series on Netflix, but I’ve never had an interest in pursuing it. However, when I saw this, I gave it a quick Google. The book has both volumes of the manga, so it was decent value for getting a complete story.
Who knows if I like it, maybe, this will be a window for me into a massive IP. Shame they don’t have many Japanese video games in this particular store.
Smashed: Junji Ito Story Collection
Saving the best deal to last. Currently retailing at £15.99, I got a pretty lovely saving on a book that was only recently released. Junji Ito’s work seems to be increasing in popularity in the UK. The author’s work appears to be available in regular book shops. Among the most obvious Shōnen, you can usually spot Tomie, Frankenstein, Shiver or Smashed.
I saw someone holding this out of the corner of my eye, and I thought I recognised the cover. I picked up Sword Art Online, gave that a quick Google. By the time I’d figured out I wanted to read Sword Art Online, the guy had put this back into the basket. I was waiting for him to go to another shelf. I then quickly picked this up and took my books to the cash register. Who knows what other gems he had in his arms.
It might take me a while to gather the courage to read this one, though. As stated before, I’m a total wimp when it comes to horror. Strangely I did read the John Carpenter comics as a child. So maybe on a beautiful sunny day, I’ll be able to read one or two of the 14 stories in this book. Over an entire year, I’ll have read the complete collection!
Have you found any great deals at your local Charity or Thrift Stores? A secret second-hand manga stash in a book store? Let me know in the comments below any great deals you’ve found while collecting manga. Maybe I’ll go and grab those two volumes of Biomega next time I go to the gym…