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Newsprint Comics at Psar O’Russey

i Sep 5, 2012 Comments Off by

Sales of screenprinted, newsprint comics have been slowly declining for years. They’re not on the newsstands anymore, and not in popular bookshops either.
After taking some initial photos in August, Our Books followed up this week with an informal survey of book wholesalers at Psar O’Russey.

Newsprint comics are usually sold by comics ‘middlemen’ to wholesalers, who then sell them to other retailers or the public at prices ranging from 700 riel to 1000 riel depending on quantity. The middlemen take orders and distribute to bookshops from another location in O’Russey. (They do not seem keen to be interviewed, despite often having a phone number on their books.)

Laing Sophal Bookstore:

‘Uncle’ Sophal has been one of the biggest sellers of newsprint comics in the market for over 10 years.
He notes that tastes are changing. Middlemen have sometimes revised covers of decades-old stories to make them appear fresh. He notes that cheap, bilingual story books (with color interiors) are popular, and cutting into the comics market. For his shop, comics sales are definitely declining, due to customer taste. Currently they only have a few newsprint comics in stock, stored in a special rack.


Saing Lina Bookstore:
‘Aunty’ Lina (above, right)  has been selling books since year 2000. She is enthusiastic about all her offerings, but notes that newsprint/screenprint comics tend to appeal to a younger (and dwindling) crowd. She concurs that readers prefer books with interior color pages and higher quality of printing – generally story books and other newer publications
Here she shares a storybook version of Sopaset (left) – competition for Em Satya‘s classic comic version. On the right is a storybook illustrated by comic artist Soeung Makara.

Leang Dalin Bookstore:
Previously, the store sold many newsprint comics; but now readers tend to prefer colorful story books – and Korean translated novels.

Cheap translated Thai humor comics (below, left) and Korean romance novels (below, right) were quite evident at the market. Virtually all translated Korean novels display manhwa style covers and rarely have copyright or ISBN numbers. It seems Khmer newsprint comics are definitely available – they’re just not in demand, which is the real source of the decline.


Photos: John Weeks. Interviews, John Weeks and Nhim Soknea

Cambodian Comics on the Map

i May 30, 2008 Comments Off by

…becoming visible slowly but surely. Lambiek Comiclopedia cribs some notes from Our Books, including -
Uth Roeun / Im Sokha / Em Satya !

below: Im Sokha in our Archives.

Flower of – Siem Reap?

i Mar 1, 2008 Comments Off by

Em Satya Exhibition

Above: Setting up…

Original pages from Em Satya’s ‘Flower of Battambang’ are being shown at Siem Reap’s Arthouse gallery until the 3rd of February, as a part of the Spotlight Festival. After that, inquire with Arthouse staff or Our Books if you’d like to purchase a piece. www.thearthousesiemreap.com

Below: Em Satya, the Arthouse crew, and children sharing the gallery with their own exhibition artwork derived from Spotlight workshops.

Em Satya Exhibition

For Em Satya and family it was their first visit to Siem Reap. Next exhibition… Battambang?

Meanwhile, you can still see the graphic novel (10 pages weekly) at Expat-Advisory.com!


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Khmer Comics Galore

i Feb 16, 2008 Comments Off by

Siem Reap Exhibition & New (old) comics!

  • And graphic designer Channa is holding comics lent to Our Books from a generous private collector. These comics are mainly from the 1980s era and even reprint some pre-revolutionary stories! We have about 150 stories to scan, digitally clean and sort for archiving.
  • We’d also like to thank a few overseas weblogs for namechecking us:





Thanks all!

At a Store Near You

i Jan 22, 2008 Comments Off by

On sale at Independence Book Store

’Bopha Battambang’ (English edition only): Java Express, Bohr’s Books, The Shop. ’Bopha Battambang’ (Khmer and English) at Monument Books,International Book Center (Sihanouk, Monivong, and Kampuchea Krom outlets), Psaa Tuol Tompoung, Psaa Orussey, Angkor Bookshop, Angkor Thom Books or Siem Reap Book Center. French, Khmer, English at Carnets d’Asie. (More locations soon to be announced.)

Comics In The News

i Jan 2, 2008 Comments Off by

Today’s Cambodia Daily has a feature story on Khmer Comics! Specifically, Em Satya’s ‘Bopha Battambang’.

Em Satya Jan 2 2007

“Tale of Doomed Love Recalls Comics’ ‘Silver Age’ “ Get your copy of the paper at your local newsstand.

Postscript: Soon followed by a story in Khmer language ‘Koh Santepheap’!

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Happy Holidays 2007

i Dec 24, 2007 Comments Off by

Our Books Christmas Card

An early Christmas present: thanks to Tharum for his writeup on Bopha Battambang!


On the Way

i Dec 14, 2007 Comments Off by


The Khmer version is out, and we are already considering going back to press! English and French will be back from the printers as soon as possible, and we will also post a list of Cambodian stores that carry the book shortly.

International? Send an email to editor [via] siewphewyeung [dot] org [dot] kh.

Bopha Battambang Book Launch

i Dec 13, 2007 1 Comment by

Bopha BattambangTuesday the 11th saw the book launch of Bopha Battambang and the closing of Em Satya’s Meta-House exhibition.

Thanks to Anne Elizabeth Moore for helping bring the idea of the ‘Comic Art Battle‘ to Cambodia, cheers to Andy Brouwer for the writeup.

Em Satya talked about his 17 year journey to publish ‘Bopha Battambang’ originally designed for publishing as a 3 part comic pamphlet in 1990, now formatted as a graphic novel by Our Books.
He answered a number of questions from a full house (standing room only) audience at Phnom Penh’s Meta-House, including many local artists.
Some photos of the Art Battle (below):

Teams One and Two had a mix of foreigners and Cambodians. The audience supplied the situation/scenario and the drawing adhered to a time limit.

First Challenge: An animal in an unusual situation: a water buffalo in a ‘lift’.



Challenge #2: A story suggested by the audience.

Team 1: The King who liked sweet cucumbers.


Team 2: The cow that got arrested.


The author judged the contestants, with the winner being Team One.
The evening concluded with with a book signing of ‘Bopha Battambang‘ and most of Em Satya’s remaining framed art was sold. English and French language versions will be available shortly.

Book Launch December 11

i Dec 3, 2007 2 Comments by

View original art, meet guests from the Cambodian/International comic art scene, see the English, French and Khmer versions of the graphic novel, and witness our “Comic Art Battle”!