This is a heavily illustrated -- in both color and black & white, as the situation calls for -- oversize volume that may very well be the best contemporary survey of Manga currently available. Written and compiled by internationally recognized British comics authority, Paul Gravett, this book provides a well designed and perfectly positioned window on the world of Manga. Excellent examples of the fabulous and mind-boggling variety and range of manga abound. Literally hundreds of different styles, schools and genres are featured. Readers really get a good sense of the cultural legacy and growing international influence of manga. This book makes an excellent gift for any manga fan. (one caveat: there are a small number of illustrations -- amounting to less than 1% of the total -- featuring adult situations -- both sexual and/or violent in nature -- that make the book inappropriate for anyone under 15 or 16).