The most essential and definitive comic book storylines involving the Mandarin for those who are interested in the character but don't know where to start.
Tales of Suspense #50
First appearance of the Mandarin.
Tales of Suspense #61-#62
The introduction of Mandarin's origin story.
Tales of Suspense #77-78
Mandarin kidnaps Tony Stark, resurrects Ultimo, and wants to use Ultimo as a weapon of mass destruction.
Invincible Iron Man #9-#11
Mandarin tries to figure out the true identity of Iron Man. Also, the introduction of Mandarin's bride, Mei Ling.
Incredible Hulk #107-#108
Mandarin tries to take Hulk under a mental control and use him for the destructive deeds.
The Invincible Iron Man #57-#58
Mandarin disguised himself as a foreign businessman who manipulates people into believing that Tony Stark is a traitor. Also, it's the first introduction of Mandarin's businessman facade, which later on will become a definitive aspect of the modern Mandarin.
The Invincible Iron Man #68-#71
Mandarin has to transfer his mind back to his original body in order to survive, but then he also becomes involved in a conflict between Iron Man, Sunfire, and Yellow Claw.
The Invincible Iron Man #98-#100
Mandarin comes back and plans on destabilizing the geopolitical relationships between the west and the east.
The Invincible Iron Man #241-#242
Mandarin challenges Tony Stark and demands from him a fair fight, otherwise, the people that are close to him will be dead.
The entire run by John Byrne, which starts with The Invincible Iron Man #258 and ends with The Invincible Iron Man #277
The longest run in which Mandarin has ever been. Arguably, the most profound and complex version of the Mandarin.
Hands of the Mandarin
Mandarin takes control over a mysterious artifact with the help of which he wants to eradicate all the technologies from the world, turning the society back into feudalistic era.
Revenge of the Mandarin
After nearly being beaten to death, Iron Man returns to take on the Mandarin who is preparing to attack Russia from his flying fortress...
Enter the Mandarin
An updated retelling of Iron Man's first encounter with the Mandarin.
Iron Man: Director of Shield
As the man behind the mask, Tony Stark's life has hit rock bottom. His plans for the super hero Initiative have hit a tragic snag. His former flame, believed dead, is being manipulated by his deadliest enemies.
The Demon, Long Way Down, The Future, Story of My Life
Matt Fraction's interesting take on Iron Man mythos, with its own spin on the Mandarin and his origin.