Read Because It Rocks: Paperakyu

As an illustrator, I love looking at the work of other artists, I love to read comics and manga, but I’m usually very picky about my comics because I get really attached to the art as well as the story.

I’d like to start a new series on my blog called “Read Because It Rocks” to share all the amazing manga stories that I’ve read so far.

A lot of Nigerians’ experience with manga only goes as far as Naruto (which strangely enough is ridiculously popular in Nigeria) and Dragon Ball Z, and then maybe some of the more popular series like Death Note.

What I’m going to be recommending are some of the lesser known series that I’ve read but that are still pretty amazing.

I hope you guys like it and take the chance to try a new manga that you otherwise might not have read. ^_^

Okay, so without further ado, the first manga that I recommend that you read because it ROCKS! is


by Matsunaga Toyokazu.

Sugabelly recommends Paperakyu by Matsunaga Toyokazu

Paperakyu by Matsunaga Toyokazu

Paperakyu is the story of a young boy who befriends another young boy suffering from a terrible and contagious condition called Paperakyu, which makes the victim’s head swell up like a football and little pincers appear on the sides of their head like arms and legs.

The story follows the two boys and all the adversity they encounter in their struggle to remain friends in the face of ostracism and discrimination, and evil government officials who are trying to hunt down and kill the boy with Paperakyu.

Paperakyu Page 1

The police officer warns the children that Paperakyu is contagious

The art style is not what I usually go for, but it has a whimsical quality that matches such an odd story.

Paperakyu and his Dad are forced to live in a shack beside a river, making their living by crushing cans

Paperakyu and his Dad are forced to live in a shack beside a river, making their living by crushing cans

The story is still ongoing, and I’ve heard it’s been licensed in Japan so hopefully it will be available to buy on Amazon soon*.

For now you can read it on Manga Here –

If you love a comic or manga series, you should ALWAYS support the artist by buying the series when it comes out/ is officially published even if you are able to read it for free online.

I know from personal experience that it takes days and months of grueling work to create even the shortest comic series, so I will always post the Amazon link (when available) and please always buy so that the artist can receive compensation for bringing us their amazing stories and art work if you are able.

Rock Factor

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  1. Kene

    Well, I try to support all local literary content. Dunno why we don’t have pure Nigerian manga/comics, even if its only online. Supa Strikas comics have lost focus.
    @on paperakyu. . . who the heck makes a living from crushing cans!!

    • sugabelly

      But we do! I have a webcomic online, check it out here –

      And Paperakyu and his Dad were forced to crush cans for a living because people ostracised them making it impossible for him or his Dad to find any normal work.

      Everyone was afraid of contracting paperakyu so they were really really poor, living in a shack and crushing cans. It really is a great story, you should give it a shot.

  2. D

    Thanks for sharing. The ethical theme took a turn for the worst, but I love how there was still a bit of compassion in the story; that’s what made me want to continue reading it till the end. Have you ever read the graphic novel “Monsters” by Ken Dahl?

    Please do continue the graphic novel/manga reviews.

    Hope you are doing well. 🙂

    • sugabelly

      Loooooool @ took a turn for the worst. Yeah Paperakyu started out as a sensitive kindly boy but I think the wickedness towards him just became too much and he snapped.

      I haven’t read Monsters but now that you’ve mentioned it I’ll definitely be on the lookout for it.

      I’m good. Thanks for asking.

    • sugabelly

      I’ve actually tried Fairy Tail and didn’t like it unfortunately. I just can’t really get behind a lot of the magic-themed manga and anime these days. The story lines aren’t very strong and seem to depend on cheesy tropes.

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