It was pretty hard for me to choose a list. Well, actually the first 6 were pretty easy, but the rest… This is what I came up with:
Yazawa Ai: Paradise Kiss
Better known for her Manga “NANA” Yazawa Ai tells the story of a bookworm who wants to satisfy her parents with studying and getting into a good college. One day, Yukari finds herself kidnapped by “Paradise Kiss” – not a terrorist group, but a group of self-styled fashion fans who’re working on their own fashion and need a model for an upcoming event. The leader of the group is George, a very extraordinaire person and awesome designer. We’re following Yukari while she’s getting soaked into the world of fashion, the charm of “Paradise Kiss” and it’s members.
Obata Takeshi / Hotta Yumi: Hikaru no Go
In Hikaru no Go we’re following Hikarus life beginning with the discovery of a haunted Go board and the meeting with the ghost that was inside it: Sai. Sai is crazy for Go while Hikaru doesn’t really care, but he makes Hikaru play for himself, because he can’t play as a ghost. Little by little Hikaru develops interest in Go and begins to play himself. As a fast learner he enters the world of Go and meets lots of interesting people, friends and rivals.
Adachi Mitsuru: Rough
Not a manga about baseball, this time we have a manga about swimming and everyone who knows Adachi won’t be surprised: it’s a sport/romance manga. Meet Keisuke and Ami whose families are rivals in business. This makes Ami hate Keisukes family, because she grew up with a father constantly ranting about them. Ending up in the same school we follow their everyday life between competitions, friends and love. Light will be bought into their families past and a strong rival will make the path a lot rougher than it could be.
Kibayashi Shin / Okimoto Shuu: Kami no Shizuku
Kami no Shizuku is a manga about wine and has a huge cast of wine-loving characters. Our protagonist is Shizuku, the son of a world famous wine critic who dies. In the testament he wishes for his son to enter a competition against his newly adopted step-son Issei: whoever finds the 12 “drops of god” (very special wine), will inhert his wine collection. While Issei is a famous Sommelier and very knowledgeable, Shizuku hates wine and has never even drunken one drop.
Kishiro Yukito: Battle Angel Alita (Last Order)
We’re visiting a world where the rich live in a floating city called Tiphares and the poor in the Scrap Yard right beneath it in the garbadge the people from Tiphares just throw down. The former Tiphares citizen doc Ido finds an intact head of a cyborg girl and takes it home. He gives her the name “Alita” and builds a body. It doesn’t take long for Alita to notice the body Ido gave her is not suited for her, as she disvores she knows an ancient fighting technique, the “Panzer Kunst”, making her a dangerous warrior. With that in mind, she becomes a hunter-warrior like Ido (against his will) and proves to be quite successful.
Takarai Rihito / Tachibana Venio: Seven Days
Seryou is a popular first-year student who has a weird habit: the first girl who askes him out on Monday, will be his girlfriend for one day. If he doesn’t fall in love, he will break up with her and erase everything she has left behind. One day third-year student Shino meets Seryou and knowing about Seryous weird habit, he’s curious and askes him out. To his surprise Seryou accepts.
Nightow Yasuhiro: Trigun (Maximum)
Trigun tells the story of the legendary man with a bounty of 60,000,000,000$$ on his head: Yash the Stampede. he gained this bounty when he destroyed a whole city by his own and no matter where he appears, the chaos seems to follow. He is a gunfighter of inhuman skill, but only uses his weapon to save life, because does not wish to kill a person. His motto? Love and Peace. His undying love? Donuts.
Song Ji-Hyung / Takashige Hiroshi: Until Death Do Us Part
This action-filled seinen-manga has a quite unusual main character: Hijikata Mamoru is blind – and a fearsome swordsman. He’s able to “see” with special glasses and has no problem to fight himself through his life. One day, he ends up as the bodyguard of a little girl with supernatural powers. Everyone wants the girl who can see the future and it’s his job to protect her.
Arakawa Hiromu: Fullmetal Alchemist
In a world where alchemy is possible, we find Edward and Alphonse Elric – our main characters. The brothers are looking for the philosophers stone to get their bodies back. Why? Because they’re alchemists and tried to revive their dead mother, but human transmutation is impossible, you’re forced to break the probably most important rule of alchemy: equvalent exchange. Ed and Al have broken this rule and their bodies have been taken away – Ed lost his right Arm, Al his whole body. To rescue his brothers soul, Ed sacrificed his left leg to bind his soul to an armor. To be able to research better, Ed (now with artificial limbs) joins the army as a state alchemist. Their path leads the brother to unforeseen events and inhuman enemies.
Takehiko Inoue: REAL
People at the rock bottom of society: highschool dropouts without a job, disabled persons – do they have a life? A future? This manga follows the struggle of 3 young men who’re below everyone elese in society and their need to find a place in life.
Ninomiya Tomomi is a highschool dropout who caused a girl to end up in a wheelchair, because he got into a traffic accident. While the guilt constantly gets to him, he fails to get a job. He seems to be an asshole, but deep down, he’s actually not that bad and quite a nice person. He meets Togawa Kiyoharu, who lost his right leg below the knee due to cancer at a young age. Before he lost his leg, he was a genius runner, now he’s a promising wheelchair basketball-player. His life is not exactly easy, altough he has a job, and he’s a difficult person to deal with. He’s certainly not a person you want to underestimate, just because he’s sitting in a wheelchair.
The third protagonist is Takahashi Hisanobu. He has the looks, the good grades in school and the talend in basketball. He has everything, but after a traffic accident his life makes a 180°-turn. The realization that he won’t be able to use his legs ever again, throws him into depression. Fallen from the highest point to the lowest, what is left for him to do?
As different as the main characters are, there are two things they have in common: their status at the bottom of society and their love for basketball.