One of the nice things about reading books like Les Miserables, Anna Karenina and The Canterbury Tales (and yes, I have read all of those) is that they're so big it makes you look smart. Thick books have a tendency to make other people assume the best about your IQ. So what happens when you get really big manga?
They're called omnibus additions and Kuriousity has published an article musing about whether or not these will take off. There are definite pluses (more for your money, more books in one place) and minuses (they can be big and clunky, plus you might get fewer colored pages). The article lists a number of places trying out omnibus manga to see how it goes with buyers. For instance, TOKYOPOP has it going with Tsubasa: Those With Wings and Fruits Basket. Digital Manga Publishing is putting the series Yellow and Little Butterfly into omnibus publications. Seven Seas has released big packages of Kashimashi and Hollow Fields. Dark Horse has gotten in with the action through Gunsmith Cats. Del Rey is advertising future omnibuses with the likes of School Rumble, Hell Girl and Air Gear. Though it's not mentioned in the Kuriousity article, I also know Yen Press will be releasing an omnibus of Azumanga Daioh in December.
So what do you, the loyal readers, think? Are you all over the new format? Do you prefer the single volumes? Do you not really care either way? And, most important of all: if reading thick books makes you smart, does reading thick manga make you brilliant? Or are big books just good for smashing things?
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