Aug 06, 2022
Anime and manga (also known as Japanese animation and Japanese comics) have become increasingly popular over recent years due to their imaginative storylines, stylized art, and often complex characters. The Ottawa Public Library’s growing collection of manga and anime titles lets you read or watch a lot of great content and support creators without going broke at the bookstore or the anime shop! With over 30 library branches across the city, every library branch has a different selection of manga and anime on their shelves – not every branch has the same series, since we just don’t have the space or the budget to get over 30 copies of every single series, so if you’ve read every manga in your local branch, that is not ‘every manga in the library’. You can find and request different series, movies, and shows from branches all across Ottawa!
- searching just for the term ‘anime’ won’t give great results, because in our bilingual catalogue this will also retrieve anything categorized as ‘dessin animé’ (French for ‘cartoons’, including everything from Disney films to Paw Patrol)
- searching for the Keyword or Subject ‘manga’ will find not just manga, but all the books or videos ABOUT manga: how to draw manga, comic history, biographies of manga artists, etc.
- traveling to different branches to see their different collections takes time and isn’t practical for everyone
Good strategies you can use:
search for either a title or author you know (assuming you know the correct spelling! The website search does not auto-correct), so if you’re looking for the tenth volume of Fullmetal Alchemist type ‘Fullmetal Alchemist 10’ into the search bar; or if you want to know whether the library has any manga by Junji Ito, click the drop-down arrow left of the search bar, choose the ‘Author’ option, and type ‘Junji Ito’ into the search bar to get everything by him (and not things ABOUT him)
find recommendation-lists by staff or other library users by clicking on the drop-down arrow to the left of the search bar and choosing the ‘List’ option, then typing either ‘anime’ or ‘manga’ into the search bar (not both – that would limit your results to lists that only have BOTH terms in their title, and miss out on lots of great lists that have only one!). This option is especially useful when searching for anime, since you can avoid the ‘dessin animé’ problem mentioned earlier!
if you just want to do a random look through any manga the library might have, instead of doing a search, you can BROWSE: in the menu-bar across the top of the website, click the Browse tab; from the drop-down menu that appears, choose ‘New Titles’; scroll down past the thumbnail images to find columns of sections you can browse – in each of the Adult, Teen, and Children’s sections of the collection, you can click on the Graphic novels option; this will show you all of the newest graphic novels the library has in that section, and you can scroll through to find the most recent manga.
if you just want to do a random look through any anime the library might have, choose the Keyword search option and type ‘Japanese’ in the search bar; when the long list of results appears, use the filters (under the side-column ‘Filter your results by...’): choose the format Movies & TV (either DVD or streaming video, whichever you prefer) and choose Content: fiction. This will leave you with only fiction movies/shows with Japanese dialogue, and though not all of these will be anime, it will still have filtered out a big chunk of non-anime, making the anime easier to find!
Don’t rely on “I’ll just wait for it to show up on the shelf” - especially if the series is super-popular, your best bet is to place a hold and join a waiting list for a reserved copy; otherwise, with everyone who does place holds, you could be waiting for YEARS! Note: the more holds an item has, the more likely the library is to buy more copies ;)
Can’t find a series in our collection? If it’s a recent publication, you can click on the Services tab on our homepage and file a ‘Suggest to purchase’ request to bring that title to our collections management team’s attention. Keep in mind this may not help for older series that are already out of print.
Get started browsing with a few of the staff lists below, and happy browsing!