Header image courtesy of Keren Fedida (via Unsplash)
Comic books—the bathroom staple. You’ve probably read one or two during your teenage and adult years in the form of Western comic books, Japanese manga, or webtoons—the popular Korean digital manhwa that spurred readership and publication worldwide.
Comic books—or “graphic novels,” if you want to sound more sophisticated—sometimes get a bad rap as picture books for adults. But we have to admit, as visual animals, what’s not to love about a steamy love scene and action-packed images? Explore the world of comics with our non-definitive list of the best manga and comic book shops in Hong Kong.
Ask any Hongkonger where to find comics and they will probably direct you to Sino Centre, the twenty-one-floored industrial building that sits right in-between bustling Mong Kok and Yau Ma Tei. Packed with merchandise, the cube-like shops specialise in phone accessories, K-pop albums, video games, cheap watches, toys, and, most importantly, comic books. We found three stores in Sino Centre to get you started, but there are many more to visit.
33 years ago, Generation Collection opened at the then-empty Sino Centre, where most floors housed offices and storage rooms. Its name connotes youth and generational interests, representing the group of young Hongkongers who flocked to the store and bonded over their mutual love of Japanese manga. Reprints and re-releases of classics like City Hunter and Dragon Ball that were popular in Hong Kong during the 1980s and 1990s can be found here, along with all-time favourites like One Piece and new releases.
Generation Collection, Room 219 & 221, 2/F, Sino Centre, 582–592 Nathan Road, Mong Kok
Comic books are not just unique to Western and Japanese pop culture. Hong Kong prides itself on having a wealth of local comics, with OGs like Uncle Choi and Old Master Q garnering fans since the 1950s and 1960s. At Collector’s Comics, you can take home many of the local gems Hongkongers love and enjoy, from original sketches of The Legend of Gods and vintage copies of Buddha’s Palm to limited editions of Solar Lord and Oriental Heroes.
Collector’s Comics, Room 702, 7/F, Sino Centre, 582–592 Nathan Road, Mong Kok
If you want to read all the hottest and latest manga releases, look no further than Runup Comics in Sino Centre. Pumping out daily updates on the most recent releases in stock on its Facebook page, Runup Comics attracts all types of readers with its extensive variety of martial arts fiction novels and manga, including a good chunk of 18+ BL (Boys’ Love) manga.
Runup Comics, Room 220, 2/F, Sino Centre, 582–592 Nathan Road, Mong Kok
During this time when entertainment media (and pirated entertainment) is easily accessible online, movie and book rental services are a rarity. Nevertheless, Hong Kong still has a small community of shops that rent and sell books, including Hop Shing Book Store, a 66-year-old business in Hung Hom favoured by regulars across the city. Classic Japanese manga titles are packed on the shelves—think Cat’s Eye, Doraemon, Sailor Moon, and Slam Dunk, plus hundreds of out-of-print Cantonese films on DVD and VCD.
Hop Shing Book Store, Room 803, 8/F, Nam On Commercial Building, 69A Wuhu Street, Hung Hom
As the Taiwan publisher of bestsellers Demon Slayer and Attack on Titan with a branch in Hong Kong, TL Comics has a handful of cards up its sleeve. Here is where you can buy the entire collection of The Ravages of Time, an ongoing hit proudly created by Hong Kong comic artist Chan Mou, and every single one of the series’ limited editions, special editions, and side stories. Besides providing online shopping services and a specialist store for manga fans, TL Comics also hosts pop-up shops across the city occasionally.
TL Comics, Room 1207, Kodak House, 321 Java Road, North Point
Comics shelf looking a little full? If you live in eastern New Territories, you’re in luck. Hidden away in one of Tai Po’s residential shopping centres, Come Comic Shop buys and sells pre-loved comic books from those who want to pass on their favourite reads and pick up used titles to enjoy. As the shop is solely run by the owner, the hours can be a little irregular, so it’s best to call before your visit to check whether it’s open. You can also check out its cubbies at a consignment store in Lam Tin. New manga titles are also available.
Come Comic Shop (尋回 · 漫畫檔), Room 9D, 2/F, Tsui Ping Commercial Complex, 3 On Chee Road, Tai Po
Cubbies, A12–14 & B12–13, Unique Cube, 5/F, Sceneway Plaza, 8 Sceneway Road, Lam Tin
When it comes to Western comic book stores in Hong Kong, the options are few and far between. But even though only a couple of retailers exist in the city, there is still plenty of fish in the comics sea. At Metro Comics, Causeway Bay’s long-established comic books store, DC and Marvel comics are stocked weekly in addition to other new releases, like the coloured deluxe version of post-apocalyptic cult classic The Walking Dead and Dark Horse Comics’ Stranger Things: Kamchatka, the latest miniseries within the Stranger Things universe. Its branch in Mong Kok specialises more in trade paperbacks and toys.
Also in the crowded Causeway Bay area—in the same shopping centre as Metro Comics, in fact—Clark’s Comics has copious amounts of titles and action figures for devoted collectors. Statues and replicas including Scarlet Witch, Transformers, Thor’s Mjölnir, and The Mandalorian Potato Head (yes, you read that right) are available for pre-order, as well as the occasional Japanese merchandise like Tekkaman Blade and Kamen Rider figurines.
Clark’s Comics, B7, B/F, Causeway Bay Shopping Centre, 15–23 Sugar Street, Causeway Bay
If you’re in a hurry, check out the nearest Eslite, Joint Publishing HK, or The Commercial Press to see if they have any manga or local comic books, though finding Western ones would be difficult. Although these bookstore chains sell the usual—novels, biographies, children’s books, and stationery—sometimes, if you’re lucky, they will have a small selection of best-selling comic books stashed away in a corner somewhere.