According to Wikipedia, "Manga" as a term used outside Japan refers specifically to comics originally published in Japan.
It actually saddens me that some readers do not consider mangas as real books. I mean, mangas are wonderful! They have stories, and they have pictures too! (RIGHT) I never review a manga except to give it three-five lines of comments, but actually, YES, I've been a manga reader for a VERY long time. I think my fondness of these Japan comics started at the same time I started reading and loving books. Doraemon and Crayon Sinchan were my favorites as a toddler! Middle grade Tirta pretty much read any mangas that attracted her eyes, and she also regularly bought Hanalala & Nakayoshi (comic magazine...?) every month.
Now, several years later, I do not read mangas as much as I used to, but I still have some absolute favorites mangakas (authors) whose works I always read whenever it's out in bookstores. I don't want to miss even a single one.
Usami Maki writes the most adorable school romance mangas, ever! Her works are always cute and fluffy, the drawings are simple and clean with not so much details. I always love how she dresses and plays with her female characters' hair. My favorites from Usami Maki are Haruyuki Bus (Bus for Spring) and Kokoro Botan (Love Button) :3
Kaoru Mori won me over with only one series: Emma! It's a story set in victorian regency era, where a maid named Emma fell in love with William, a gentleman from the upper class. Kaoru Mori's magnificent drawing style is rich with exquisite details but also clean at the same time. The lines are soft and quite unique, different from other mangakas.
This shouldn't be a secret. Everybody loves Miiko! Ono Eriko is famous for her Hai, Miiko! series. I grew up with Miiko. I've read the stories of Miiko's life since I was younger than her, and now I'm already 18 and Miiko is still in the 5th grade. Ha ha. It's a super HILARIOUS series about the everyday life of Yamada Miiko, with her family and friends. The big head and big mouth of the characters are Ono Eriko's trademark. I was a sad panda because I couldn't come to Ono Eriko's meet & greet fan event in Jakarta last year :( But then she wrote about it (the event) in the latest installment, volume #26, yay!
Hanalala (Indonesia's version of LaLa) introduces me to Matsuri Hino's works. I'm ADDICTED to her works! Not only her drawing style are rich (but it's a different kind of 'rich' than Kaoru Mori) and detailed (especially in eyes, hair, and clothes), but the plot of her stories are always good! Her skill is amazing. She writes about romance and dares to tackle different topics such as pirate & vampire story. My favorites: Vampire Knight, Wanted, Merupuri.
Other than the 4 mangakas I've mentioned above, I also love these three with their particular works:
With her Goong! series. It's a very famous series (manhwa) from Korea that has been made into a tv drama called Princess Hours (2006). Though I don't really fancy her drawings, Park So Hee can draw clothes and rooms (Korean traditional clothes as well as common wear, and Korean palace interiors with all the details) wonderfully. Goong also has a quite solid plot.
With his Ingenuo. It's actually from Taiwan; the story about Ding Jiayu who's interested in photography. She pretends to be a guy in order to join Yangzhao's team (which apparently, refuses to hire a woman in their team). It's funny, lovely, and the romance is so swoooooony :3 Ryan's drawing is so 80-ish, in my opinion.
With his Yotsuba&, a series about the daily life of Yotsuba, a five year old (super adorable) girl who lives with his Dad. It's so fresh and funny! Yotsuba is still a little girl with huge curiosity and lots of questions about life. Not so much plot, but the drawings are totally lovely! A perfect cure for when you're bored, tired, or when you need something refreshing.
So! Do you read mangas, too? What's your favorites? Have any recommendation for me to read? I'll be very happy if you're willing to share with me! :D
Have fun and read some more,