Ask Tangognat: Manga for boys who like Archie

Kiki writes:

You helped before with manga for tweens, now I’m wondering what you can recommend manga-wise for boys who enjoy the Archie and Jughead comics/digests. They don’t necessarily want something Pokemon-ish, just humorous teen-age hijinks.

This is a little tricky, because much of the teenage hijink manga that I can think of is probably not suitable for tweens.

I think I only read the first two volumes or so of Love Roma, but that might be an option. It is a romantic comedy/slice of life manga that focuses just as much on the boy as the girl as Hajime and Yumiko get together, much to the delight of their classmates who enjoy teasing the couple about their new relationship. It looks like School Library Journal rated this at grades 7-9, but I think the last volume takes a turn towards more mature content so that might be something to look out for.

While some of Viz’s Shonen Jump sports stories might not have the comedy factor, they might be a good choice for boys who want more realistic manga. Prince of Tennis and Whistle are two titles that come to mind.

After these titles, I’m stumped. Salt Water Taffy looks like it might be fun. I think Kiki has hit on an age range and genre combination that is really under served. Most of the teenage hijinks manga that I can think of are either for kids 13+ or are mostly aimed at girls. If you have any suggestions, please add your comments!

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