Daniel Pink is a former speechwriter for Al Gore and the author of several influential examinations of the contemporary workplace and the place of workers in a post information age economy, including Free Agent Nation (2002) and A Whole New Mind (2006).  In April of 2008 Penguin Books will publish Pink's latest work, The Adventure of Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You Will Ever Need ($15), the first American business manga.


Pink has spent time in Japan on a fellowship studying the manga industry, which he told the New York Times was 'the center of all Japanese popular culture.'  Pink explained that while  'Manga is becoming enormously popular in the United States with some titles very high on the best-seller lists, especially among teens and people in their 20s, in Japan, comics aren't just for kids. You have manga graphic novels -- book-length comics -- covering a whole range of topics like how to prepare for retirement or how to cook or how to find a mate. It is a medium analogous to television. Here in the United States, manga has been very literary or targeted toward teenagers.'


Inspired by the Japanese model Pink has created the first American manga title for a business audience.  The 160-page volume illustrated by Rob Ten Pas (a winner of the Tokyopop Rising Stars of Manga competition) traces the career arc of Johnny Bunko, an employee at a big corporation and by following his adventures in corporate life readers can learn what Pink calls 'the six essential rules to a satisfying and productive career.'