Ashley Hawkins is the campus librarian at the Samuel J Tilden Educational Complex in Brooklyn, NY. Ashley has a BS in English Language Arts Education from UCF, and an MA in English Literature from the Bread Loaf School of English as well as an MSLIS from Pratt Institute. Currently, she runs the blog and YouTube channel Manga Librarian, which serves to provide collection development support to school and public librarians wishing to expand their knowledge of manga and anime. She also runs the Animation & Illustration Collection for the New York City School Library System’s Cooperative Collection Development Initiative.
Ashley has been engaging in Japanese popular culture since she was a small child watching Sailor Moon, and has read hundreds of manga, light novels, and popular novels originating in Japan. In her teen and early adult years, she was involved with cosplay and lolita subcultures. Her favorite manga series of all time are Princess Jellyfish, Fruits Basket, and Ouran High School Host Club. Her favorite anime series are Polar Bear Cafe, Cardcaptor Sakura, Your Lie in April, and Himouto! Umaru-Chan. Her favorite video games are Final Fantasy X, the Persona series, Breath of the Wild, and Super Smash Bros. Ask her about her Gudetama collection!
If you are interested in a more formal critique of Japanese culture, you can read her article on Japanese death culture in relation to horror for CineNation.