If you haven’t read the new manga Spy x Family, then you have a real treat ahead of you! Not only is it hilarious and surprisingly sweet, but it’s also one of the most highly awarded new manga of the year. But if you’re still not convinced, read on to find out everything you need to know about Spy x Family!
What Is the Spy x Family Manga About?
In a country called Ostania, which is locked in a cold war with Westalis, filled with espionage and assassination, the top agent for Westalis is a man who is known only by his codename as a spy: ‘Twilight.’
He is given the mission to investigate a politician in Ostania named Donovan Desmond. But Desmond is a paranoid recluse. In fact, the only place he regularly goes is the functions at his son’s prestigious school. Twilight’s orders now mean that he has to get married and have a child so he can infiltrate the school, and he has seven days in which to find them.
Twilight takes on the identity of Loid Forger, a psychiatrist. He adopts a young girl named Anya, and enters into a fake marriage with Yor Briar, an Ostanian civil servant who wants to get married in order to avoid attention in the highly suspicious Ostanian society.
Here’s what Twilight doesn’t know: Anya escaped from a lab that gave her the ability to read minds, and Yor is a professional assassin.
The rest of the manga centers on the three of them and their adventures (and misadventures) as they try to hide who they really are from each other and pretend to be the best family they can be. (While maybe ignoring the fact that they’re not always pretending!)
Who Are The Characters in Spy x Family?
- Twilight/Loid Forger – A master spy working for Westalis who is highly skilled in combat, memorization, and information processing. He became a war orphan as a child, and now works as a spy to create a ‘world where children wouldn’t cry.’
- Yor Forger – Originally Yor Briar, she works as a clerk at City Hall in Berlint, Ostania. She also goes by the name ‘Thorn Princess’ in her other job as an assassin.
- Anya Forger – Loid and Yor’s adopted daughter. She’s a four or five-year-old girl (although she says she’s six so Loid will adopt her) who can read minds. She was originally a human test subject named ‘Subject 007’ but escaped the laboratory where she was kept.
- Bond – The Loid family’s dog. Previously known as ‘Subject 8,’ Bond has precognition abilities, which Anya can see through her own ability to read minds.
- Yuri Briar – Yor’s younger brother. He has a bit of a sister complex since Yor basically raised him from a young age when their parents died. He also works for Ostania’s State Security Service.
- Damian Desmond – The son of Twilight’s target, Donavan Desmond, Damian is a six-year-old student who likes his peers to call him ‘Lord Damian.’ When Anya enters his class he starts to bully her, but when she stands up for herself, he gets a crush on her instead.
Isn’t Spy x Family Getting a Ton of Buzz?
As makes sense for a manga that’s clever and loaded with heart, Spy x Family has been winning awards left, right, and center!
It took first place in the Tsugi ni Kuru Manga Awards of 2019 in the web manga category.
The Kono Manga ga Sugoi! 2020 guidebook listed Spy x Family as the best manga series for male readers.
Honya Club’s Nationwide Bookstore Employees’ Recommended Comics of 2020 list also ranked Spy x Family as number one.
And, on a purely financial note, as of the release of volume 2, Spy x Family has over 800,000 copies in circulation!
What Other Manga Has the Creator of Spy x Family Worked on?
Great work on this level is no surprise from the series creator, Tatsuya Endo. While Spy x Family is his first major hit, he has produced some other one-shots and short series that have done very well, and was mentored by the artists on some other very popular manga.
His own previous titles include TISTA, Gekka Bijin, Rengoku no Ashe, Ishi ni Usubeni, Tetsu ni Hoshi, and ISpy, along with several one-shots. Endo worked with his longtime editor, Shihei Lin, to take the best parts of those works and create Spy x Family!
Where Can I Read the Spy x Family Manga?
In North America, Viz Media has licensed the series for English release. Chapters are currently available for free on their website! Shonen Jump+ has the original biweekly serialization in Japan, and chapters have been collected into volumes and published by Shueisha.
Originally, the fourth volume of Spy x Family was supposed to be released on 1 May 2020, but it was pushed back due to the COVID-19 epidemic in Japan.
However, the first volume translated into English was still published on 2 June 2020, and volume two was released on 1 September! You can order volume one online from wherever you prefer to buy manga, and pre-order volume two.