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My only experience with comic books has been reading Watchmen and Y: The Last Man. I want to get into the Marvel Universe starting with the Guardians of the Galaxy; what is a good place to start and is there a suggested reading order for Marvel comics? Also, where would you recommend I buy comics from?

  • Is it safe to assume that you want to read about the original/newest team, and not the 1990's version? – phantom42 Feb 26 '14 at 18:07
  • @phantom42 That's correct, I would like to read about the team the movie will be based on before I see the movie. But I also want to read any back story that will help me understand what is going on. – Dan C Feb 26 '14 at 18:11
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    @DanC The Marvel Cinematic Universe is its own canon. While there may be similarities with one of the comics, it will not be based on any of them. – Izkata Feb 27 '14 at 1:00
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I would suggest starting with the Annihilation: Conquest series along with prologues and tie-ins. Then moving onto Guardians of the Galaxy volume 3 which is bringing the series into the Marvel NOW! universe and will most likely be what future issues cover.

Volume 2

Annihialtion: Conquest

This series covers how the new Guardians became acquainted. If you want to just get the story for members of the Guardians team you can skip the Wraith and Nova tie-ins. http://marvel.com/comics/events/293/annihilation_conquest

Guardians Vol. 2

Moving on to the second volume of Guardians of the Galaxy. The first volume covers the original Guardians from 1990 (which is still a good read and does come into play somewhat!) But not essential. http://marvel.wikia.com/Guardians_of_the_Galaxy_Vol_2_1

Halfway through this volume the War of Kings starts which, like Annihilation: Conquest, has its own set of tie ins. http://marvel.com/comics/events/276/war_of_kings

Thanos Imperative

Finally, the end of volume two introduces the new collection of comics called "The Thanos Imperative" which provides a conclusion for the team as a whole.

Annihilators/Rocket and Groot

One final tie-in! This one covers the aftermath of the Thanos Imperative, it's a split up comic with two different stories. The Rocket and Groot side of things builds off of Rocket Raccoon originals from 1985, not essential, but still fun to read. The Annihilators a team formed in the wake The Thanos Imperative.

Volume 3

Here's the newest of the Guardians that is actually on-going. Marvel set it up to be a starting point for new readers as well as old. It's more connected with the Earth Heroes with Iron Man joining the team. I'm enjoying it so far, but I'm stil a huge advocate for starting with Volume 2. http://marvel.wikia.com/Guardians_of_the_Galaxy_Vol_3_1

  • Is reading the Annihilation series necessary to understand the Annihilation: Conquest series? – Dan C Feb 26 '14 at 21:52
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    @DanC nope, some of the characters from Annihilation come back in Conquest. But none of it would be considered related to Guardians backstory or really to the Conquest storyline. – Lon Kastenson Feb 27 '14 at 13:53
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Marvel Comics coincidentally just sent out a newsletter listing their suggested reading/purchase list to get into the current version of Guardians of the Galaxy.

It includes:

It should be noted that I reproduced the list as Marvel posted it, but it stands to reason that Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2: Cosmic Avengers and Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 2: Angela should actually both come after Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 4: Realm of the Kings (Cosmic Avengers and Angela are "Volume 3" of tGotG, while the others are all from "Volume 2")

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