Manga dominates the March bestseller list with 18 out of the top 20 titles. Viz Media had 15 of the top 20 including the #1 book, Naruto Vol. 28, the first volume in the Shippuden (literally "Hurricane Chronicles) cycle, which begins two and a half years after the end of Vol. 27. Volume 28 in this popular series had, according to retailers interviewed by ICv2, one of the biggest debut weeks of any manga in years and quickly became their number one manga seller of 2008 so far. But the dominance of the Cartoon Network-aided Naruto property can be more accurately gauged by the fact that there are five other Naruto-related volumes in the top twenty.
Top 20 Graphic Novels 3/3 - 3/30/3008 Rank Title Author Pub Pub Date 1 NARUTO VOL. 28 KISHIMOTO MASASHI VIZ 3/1/2008 2 FRUITS BASKET VOL. 19 TAKAYA NATSUKI TKP 3/1/2008 3 NEGIMA VOL. 17 AKAMATSU KEN DEL 3/1/2008 4 FULLMETAL ALCHEMIST VOL. 16 ARAKAWA HIROMU VIZ 3/1/2008 5 DEATH NOTE HOW TO READ VOL. 13 OHBA TSUGUMI VIZ 2/1/2008 6 THE GENTLEMEN'S ALLIANCE + VOL. 5 TANEMURA ARINA VIZ 3/1/2008 7 NARUTO VOL. 27 W/ STICKER KISHIMOTO MASASHI VIZ 12/1/2007 8 NARUTO VOL. 26 KISHIMOTO MASASHI VIZ 12/1/2007 9 NARUTO: THE OFFICIAL FANBOOK KISHIMOTO MASASHI VIZ 2/1/2008 10 BLEACH VOL. 22 KUBO TITE VIZ 2/1/2008 11 WATCHMEN TPB MOORE ALAN DC 4/1/1995 12 XXXHOLIC VOL. 11 CLAMP DEL 3/1/2008 13 DEATH NOTE VOL. 1 OHBA TSUGUMI VIZ 10/1/2005 14 ONE PIECE VOL. 17 ODA EIICHIRO VIZ 3/1/2008 15 ANITA BLAKE, VAMPIRE HUNTER: THE FIRST DEATH HC HAMILTON LAURELL K. MAR 2/1/2008 16 NARUTO VOL. 1 KISHIMOTO MASASHI VIZ 7/1/2003 17 THE BEST OF POKEMON ADVENTURES: RED KUSAKA HIDENORI VIZ 10/1/2006 18 BLACK CAT VOL. 13 YABUKI KENTARO VIZ 3/1/2008 19 NARUTO VOL. 25 KISHIMOTO MASASHI VIZ 12/1/2007 20 DEATH NOTE VOL. 2 OHBA TSUGUMI VIZ 11/1/2005
Tokyopop's Fruits Basket, the most popular shojo manga in North America over the past four years, remains the second most potent manga property in the U.S., though it is being pushed by Viz Media's Death Note. Death Note, which placed three volumes in the top twenty, is a shonen series that benefits greatly from the airing of its anime adaptation on the Cartoon Network.
Del Rey Manga placed two volumes on the list, Ken Akamatsu's sexy Negima at #3, and Clamp's xxxHOLIC at #12.
Aside from Fruits Basket, Viz Media's The Gentlemen's Alliance by Arina Tanemura was the only other shojo manga on the March list. The other Viz Media titles on the list are shonen series with anime tie-ins, Bleach and Black Cat; and the kodomo (kids) manga, Pokemon -- further evidence that this property is undergoing a revival, especially in the mass market.
DC Comics and Marvel each placed one title on the March list. Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons' Watchmen is a perennial favorite, but the production of a Watchmen movie, which is due out next March, has raised interest in this property to a new level (#11 in March) and should push sales even higher through the rest of the year and beyond. Marvel has had solid success in adapting popular fiction into graphic novels with Stephen King's Dark Tower and Laurell K. Hamilton's Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, the only hardcover on the list, which gave Marvel the 15th spot.