As the Comic Book Herald audience has grown from my cats (and only then under duress; I’m not proud of the threats I made) to a multi-pronged legion of fanatical comic fans, I’ve been getting more and more questions.
What’s up with this specific aspect of your Infinity reading order? I’m new to comics, where should I start with the Avengers? You seem like an omega-level intellect – how would you handle the crisis in the Ukraine?
All valid questions, and I’m happy to answer them, but I’ve found that I’m frequently answering them behind closed doors. In super-sexy private time. (Many people just call this e-mail.)
So starting henceforth, I’ll be answering one question a week for all to see. I call it “the question of the week.” I’m open to suggestions, but I think I nailed it. As always, if your question is super-sexy private, I won’t share information you don’t want shared. And you can send all your questions to @comicbookherald on Twitter, or email@example.com.
Question of the Week
I recently fell in love with Marvel comic books. I began reading The New Avengers vol. 1 and i just finish Vol. 5. I also seek one that can help me with some sort of timeline – You know , how to read them in the correct timeline. ~Mathias
Paraphrasing the question here, it’s basically: what order do I read modern Avengers trades?
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This is a fairly loaded question given the Avengers’ intersection with major Marvel events and then the post-Civil War split of New Avengers and Mighty Avengers titles.
It’s also a great question, and one I’ve heard from a lot of new comic readers. So let’s do this – here’s to making Avengers trades comprehensible for a new reader.
Bonus Update – 10 Best Avengers Stories Before 1998
Below you’ll find a guide to navigating Avengers comics from 1998 to present. I’m adding this additional section to cover the essential Avengers stories you should check out if you’re more interested in the history of the team.
I’d also recommend you check out My Marvelous Year, the Comic Book Herald reading club where we read every single year of Marvel Comics, in manageable weekly installments. We cover plenty of Avengers over there as well!
Avengers Epic Collection: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes – Issues #1 to #20
Avengers Epic Collection: Behold the Vision
– Issues #57 to #76
Avengers: Kree / Skrull War – Issues #88 to #97
Avengers: The Bride of Ultron – #157 to #166
Avengers: The Korvac Saga – Issues #167 to #177
Avengers: Nights of Wundagore – Issues #181 to #187
Avengers: Heart of Stone – Issues #188 to #205
Avengers: The Legacy of Thanos – Issues #255 to #261
Avengers: Under Siege – Issues #270 to #277
Avengers: Assault on Olympus – Issues #278 to #285
The Avengers: Where Do I Start?
If we’re talking the modern Marvel era (kicks off about 1998 with Joe Quesada as editor-in-chief and the launch of the Marvel Knights imprint), many fans would have you start with Avengers Disassembled. For the purposes of getting caught up on major storylines and the state of the Marvel Universe as a whole, this makes a lot of sense.
But if you just like Avengers stories, then it would be a mistake to entirely bypass Kurt Busiek and George Perez’s near 60 issue run on the title. These are two all-time comic book greats, and Busiek in particular has proven himself as a master of Marvel lore with the essential Marvels and Avengers Forever.
If you’re reading on Marvel Unlimited, this is the series known as Avengers 1998 – 2004, and ends with Avengers Disassembled. The trades can be collected as follows:
Avengers Assemble Vol 1 (#1 – #11)
Avengers Assemble Vol 2 (#12 – #23)
Avengers Assemble Vol 3 (#24 – #34)
Avengers Assemble Vol 4 (#35 – #44)
Avengers Assemble Vol 5 (#45 – #56)
From here, Avengers is taken over by Geoff Johns, known now as DC’s Chief Creative Officer, and the man who brought us Infinite Crisis, Green Lantern: Rebirth, and the coolest version of Sinestro in years. Knowing his later success with the Green Lantern franchise, it’s interesting to see Johns cut his teeth on the Avengers.
Avengers: The Geoff Johns Collection (#57 – #63)
Avengers: The Geoff Johns Collection (#64 – #76)
Avengers falls into a weird state of trade collection disarray here, with Chuck Austen’s run on issues #77 – #84 collected over the course of two terribly reviewed trade paperbacks. I include links to these issues here and here, only so you can see how angry they make Marvel fans.
Otherwise, our next stop is Avengers Disassembled, where Brian Michael Bendis and David Finch kick off the modern Marvel era of events. Note here that Avengers re-adopted the original numbering so it could sell a number #500.
Avengers Disassembled (#500 – #503 + Finale)
Avengers Disassembled: So No More Avengers, Right?
Of course not! But to Avengers Disassembled’s credit, the team is greatly impacted and is never quite the same. It can only exist moving forward as a new entity: the New Avengers.
I’d note here that there’s a pretty awesome New Avengers omnibus that also collects the Avengers Disassembled issues. I’ll list out the remaining trades and their intersection with Marvel events in chronological order below, but you may prefer the omnibus. Marvel Unlimited readers, get your New Avengers on here. And your Young Avengers here.
Young Avengers: Ultimate Collection (#1 – #12)
New Avengers vol 3 (#11 – #15)
New Avengers vol 4 (#16 – #20)
New Avengers vol 5 (#21 – #25)
Civil War: Young Avengers & Runaways (#1 – #4)
Thunderbolts by Warren Ellis & Mike Deodato Ultimate Collection (#110 – #121)
This is a non- Avengers title, but it’s going to be important with Dark Avengers later. Including for that purpose. Also, Warren Ellis is awesome, and it’s a blast.
Civil War Splits up the Avengers
Following the events of Civil War, Avengers titles start to get really fractured. You have your official, government-sanctioned Avengers (Mighty), your rebel Avengers (New), and your Avengers: Initiative training program.
As you’d expect, you don’t necessarily have to keep up with every title to know what’s going on in the Marvel Universe. New Avengers remains a good barometer for macro-level storylines. Nonetheless, there are plenty of options.
For the Marvel Unlimited crowd: Mighty Avengers & Avengers: The Initiative
Fallen Son: The Death of Captain America
New Avengers vol 6 (#26 – #31)
Mighty Avengers vol 1 (#1 – #6)
Avengers / Invaders (#1 – #12)
Avengers: The Initiative vol 1 (#1 – #6)
Mighty Avengers vol 2 (#7 – #12)
Avengers: The Initiative vol 2 (#7 – #13)
New Avengers: Illuminati (#0 – #5)
New Avengers, vol 8 (#38 – #43)
Mighty Avengers, vol 3 (#12 – #15)
Avengers: The Initiative vol 3 (#14 – #19)
Mighty Avengers, vol 4 (#16 – #20)
New Avengers, vol 9 (#44 – #47)
Dark Reign of the Dark Avengers
Secret Invasion provides another long in the works shake up to the state of the Avengers, introducing Norman Osborne’s Dark Avengers as a new title in the game. The following Avengers trades coincide with Dark Reign and ultimately Siege.
A note here that the Dark Avengers omnibus may well be the best option for collecting all these issues. It really just depends on your interest level in Dark Avengers / Uncanny X-Men: Utopia, which is not included in the omnibus.
For the Marvel Unlimited crowd, here’s Dark Avengers.
Mighty Avengers vol 5 (#21 – #26)
Avengers: The Initiative vol 4 (#20 – #25)
Dark Avengers / Uncanny X-Men: Utopia (#7 – #8 + various issues)
New Avengers vol 10 (#48 – #50)
Dark Reign: Young Avengers (#1 – #5)
Mighty Avengers vol 6 (#27 – #31)
Avengers: The Initiative vol 5 (#26 – #30)
New Avengers vol 11 ( #51 – 54)
Dark Avengers vol 2 (#9 – #12)
New Avengers vol 12 ( #55 – 60)
Avengers: The Initiative vol 6 (#31 – #35)
New Avengers vol 13 ( #61 – 64)
Mighty Avengers vol 7 (#32 – #36)
Dark Avengers vol 3 (#13 – #16)
Avengers: The Children’s Crusade (#1 – #9)
Children’s Crusade is post-Siege and reconnects us with the Young Avengers and the Scarlet Witch.
Heroic Age Avengers
Just like that the Dark Reign is over and Marvel’s Heroic Age essentially reboots the Avengers. The Heroic age covers 2010 to 2012 and includes all of the Avengers issues before Marvel Now! begins.
For the Marvel Unlimited crowd, New Avengers, Avengers, Secret Avengers, and Avengers Prime.
Secret Avengers vol 1 (#1 – #6)
Secret Avengers vol 2 (#6 – #12)
Avengers: Fear Itself (Avengers #13 – #17, New Avengers #14 – #16)
Secret Avengers: Fear Itself (#13 – #15)
New Avengers vol 3 (#17 – #23)
New Avengers vol 4 (#24 – #30)
New Avengers vol 5 (#31 – #34)
Marvel Now! Avengers
The epic Avengers titles with Jonathan Hickman at the writer’s helm. I’d note here that the full list of Avengers titles from 2012 through 2015 can be found in my Marvel Now reading order, or in Comic Book Herald’s complete Jonathan Hickman at Marvel reading order. Alternatively, the below will get you started.
Infinity Omnibus: Avengers (#14 – #23), New Avengers (#7 – #12)
Avengers Reading Order Leading Up To 2015’s Secret Wars
There’s your guide to Avengers trades and titles from 1998 through Secret Wars!
All-New All-Different Avengers
The post Secret Wars landscape marks a serious shake-up for the Avengers lineups, with new rosters across the board.
You can view the Avengers comics in the full context of the Marvel Universe in Comic Book Herald’s All-New All-Different Marvel reading order.
Rage of Ultron (Original Graphic Novel)
This graphic novel from Rick Remender with gorgeous art by Jerome Opena was published around the time of Secret Wars, but can be read in line with the All-New Avengers roster, and is purportedly very much in canon. Great read for fans of Ultron and Hank Pym, founding Avenger!
All-New All-Different Avengers Vol. 1: The Magnificent Seven (All-New All-Different Avengers #1 to #6)
Uncanny Avengers: Unity Vol. 1: Lost Future (Uncanny Avengers #1 to #6)
New Avengers: A.I.M. Vol. 1: Everything is New (New Avengers #1 to #6)
A-Force Vol. 1: Hypertime (A-Force #1 to #5)
Avengers Standoff Reading Order
AllNew, AllDifferent Avengers Vol. 2: Family Business (All-New All-Different Avengers #9 to #12)
Uncanny Avengers: Unity Vol. 2: The Man Who Fell to Earth (Uncanny Avengers #7 to #12)
A-Force Vol. 2: Rage Against the Dying of the Light
Avengers: Unleashed Vol. 1: Kang War One (Avengers #1 to #6)
Uncanny Avengers: Unity Vol. 4: Red Skull (Uncanny Avengers #18 to #22)
Great Lakes Avengers Vol. 1: Same Old, Same Oid
Occupy Avengers Vol. 1: Taking Back Justice
U.S.Avengers Vol. 1: American Intelligence Mechanics
Collects: U.S.Avengers 1-6
Avengers: Unleashed Vol. 2: Secret Empire
Collects: Avengers 7-11
U.S.Avengers Vol. 2: Cannonball Run
Collects: U.S.Avengers 7-12
Occupy Avengers Vol. 2: In Plain Sight
Collects: Occupy Avengers 5-9
Uncanny Avengers: Unity Vol. 5: Stars and Garters
Collects: Uncanny Avengers 26-30
Marvel Legacy Avengers
To see the full context of Avengers comics during this time period, check out Comic Book Herald’s complete Marvel Legacy reading order.
Avengers & Champions: Worlds Collide
Collects: Avengers 672-674, Champions 13-15
Collects: Avengers 675-690
Marvel Fresh Start Avengers
Avengers by Jason Aaron Vol. 1: The Final Host
Collects: Avengers (2018) #1-6 And Material From Free Comic Book Day 2018 (Avengers/Captain America)
Loki gets the Avengers back together (again) as a startling revelation is made about all life on Earth in an incident involving the Celestials!
Collects: Amazing Spider-Man: Wakanda Forever, X-Men: Wakanda Forever, Avengers: Wakanda Forever, Black Panther Annual (2018) #1
Given how entwined the Dora Milaje become with the Avengers once Black Panther is appointed chair, this seems a fitting entry here.
West Coast Avengers Vol. 1: Best Coast
Collects: West Coast Avengers (2018) #1-4, Young Avengers Presents (2008) #6, The Unbelievable Gwenpool (2016) #1
Hawkeyes Kate Bishop and Clint Barton re-open the franchise- now with a reality show angle!
Avengers by Jason Aaron Vol. 2: World Tour
Collects: Avengers (2018) #7-12
A new headquarters! 700th Anniversary Issue! Namor Goes Bad! Plus Ghost Rider of 1 Million BC!
West Coast Avengers Vol. 2: City Of Evils
Collects: West Coast Avengers (2018) #5-10
Marvel Boy returns to Kate’s life! Awkward.
Avengers by Jason Aaron Vol. 3: War Of The Vampires
Collects: Avengers (2018) #13-17
Featuring special guest Avenger: Blade! Plus a story of Iron Fist 1 Million BC!
Collects: Avengers: No Road Home (2019) #1-10
A spiritual successor to the “No Surrender” storyline. Featuring the Immortal Hulk, Rocket Raccoon and Conan The Barbarian!
Collects: Savage Avengers (2019) #1-5, Material From Free Comic Book Day 2019 (Avengers)
Conan teams up with Wolverine, Venom and others!
Avengers in War of the Realms!
Avengers By Jason Aaron Vol. 4
Collects: Avengers #21 to #25
Have a question of your own? Let’s hear it in the comments, @comicbookherald, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
first of all great site for a beginner like me! Thank you!
I have a question:in the 10 best avengers stories where do you place the infinity gauntlet ( and also infinity war and crusade)?
I love Infinity Gauntlet! I place it here in my Thanos reading guide: https://www.comicbookherald.com/the-complete-thanos-reading-order-guide/
nevermind i see
So if i wanted to read the bonus content as well is there a specific place i should add them in or should i maybe just read them before or after?
Carla Lopez says
Hi, I really love your guide but I think you should add the New Avengers Annual #2 (2006 in MU) just after Civil War because they change the line-up and it throws you off a little. Thanks a lot for your hard work. 🙂 hugs from mexico
Carla Lopez says
Forget it haha I was a little confused. Anyways great job
Matthew Wilks says
Where does the Uncanny Avengers, Avengers Prime, Avenger Assemble (Bendis, & DeConnick), and Avengers World fit into this Avengers trade collections.
Thank you for everything you have done.
Avengers Prime happens after the Siege event, and it’s highly recommended that you’ve read Civil War (CW is actually very essential to the events leading up to Avengers vs X-Men) before that because Avengers Prime kind of acts as the first time Tony and Steve have been in close proximity since the end of Civil War, co-starring Thor as he navigates the aftermath of Siege.
I believe Uncanny Avengers falls into Marvel NOW! Which is the state of the universe after Avengers vs X-men. I’d read this right after AvX.
Avengers Assemble & Avengers World are also a Marvel NOW! Titles, I believe. Find out more here: https://www.comicbookherald.com/the-complete-marvel-reading-order-guide/marvel-now-checklist/
Bruce Williams says
Ok. Just read Celestial Quest. Good to see Vision and Mantis get together after his breakup with Scarlet Witch. But what happens next, where do I read to see what became of Mantis (Celestial Madonna)’s plan to return to Earth but be on her own. Is this before or after Avengers Vol 2 (Heroes Reborn) and Vol. 3 (Avengers Assemble)? The Marvel Unlimited link to Mantis stories was not very help, and did not see Clestial Quest among the Vision timeline of MU books. All so very confusing, but this is one thread I’d like to pursue. Thanks for being there for us and helping!!! I missed so much playing Rumpelstiltsnocomicsken for 30 years …
Thank you so much for this list! I had started reading Disassembled and House of M when it was out, then loaned the trades to a friend never to be seen again. I’m starting to get back into it and recollect the trades and try to catch up and this list is a lifesaver ^-^
Awesome, glad you like it!
first, I must say, thank you for all your work. This list has been the reason I started reading conics, I finally had a starting point. I’m coming to a completion of this list, and just wanted to see if there is anything new since you originally made it 😀 such as the uncanny avengers/axis, or anything to this secret war I hear so much about! Thanks again .
All the newer Avengers books can be found in my Marvel NOW guide. It includes literally everything. Enjoy!
Matt Lehn says
While being really stand-alone, Bendis & Bags’ “Avengers Assemble” works best right before AVX. It may happen shortly thereafter but it’d really be mashed in with Bendis’ finales & the transition into Marvel Now!
Excellent, Thank you!
how does Avengers Assemble 1-8 (Bendis/Bagley) fit into this or into the overall big events? Maybe I am just not seeing it because there is just soo much stuff! 😀
Daniel B. says
Okay. So I got a very elaborate question. I’m finishing up your spider-man reading order, and soon I’m going to start your avengers reading order. I was skimming through everything here and noticed it cuts off at Infinity. So, my question is how does should I read Avengers 24-28,Mighty Avengers 4-10, and where does uncanny Avengers fit into everything? Also, is new avengers still going on. If so how does that fit into everything? Sorry for this being so long.
Uncanny Avengers can be read at the start of Marvel NOW! Both New Avengers and Avengers are still ongoing after Infinity, and you can continue to read those series following the events of Infinity as you like 🙂
First of all, great website. As someone just really discovering comics it’s a fantastic resource. Can I ask where does the avengers assemble fit in to the reading timeline of your guide part one (1998-2004)
Thanks in advance and keep up the amazing work
Good question. Basically you can read this Avengers series any time during the guide part one. I need to run through the series to add it there sometime in the near future, but for now, I’d encourage you to just read it all at once as you like!
I just finished reading avengers vs xmen comic great comic btw my fav is iron fist what do you recommend for me to carry on with, shall i start the uncanny avengers or something else what do think.
Another question do you think i should follow this order (marvel now) with infinity and tie-in
I know it gonna be confusing so what do you suggest if i want the avengers and the infinity story lie
I want to start reading the avengers comics from the beginning and does jonathan hickmans avengers start from the beginning or just a new roster of superheros
Hickman’s Avengers marks the beginning of the Avengers in the Marvel NOW! Era. So essentially Marvel Comics after Avengers vs. X-Men.
If you want to read Avengers and Infinity, I would recommend starting with Hickman’s Avengers and New Avengers from issue #1. The two series are interconnected, and starting with the Infinity tie-ins will likely be confusing. I have a more detailed Infinity reading order here.
Hope that helps!
Thanks so much, Dave. I was honestly going to e-mail you the other day to request a modern Avengers reading order.
Suggestion: Some time far in the future, do you think you could assemble a reading order for all modern era marvel? It seems like you started this with Part 1 of your reading order but then subsequently focused only on crossovers.
You noticed that, huh? 🙂
You’re right, the intention has always been a more complete order. The crossovers have proved the most expedient way of making resources available.
So no promises, but I hear what you’re saying, and it’s definitely on my mind. Hopefully it won’t be too long now. In the meantime, glad this Avengers guide is useful. Enjoy!