Friday, October 23, 2009

Two New Books


I recently ordered two books from Amazon and they came in the mail a few days ago. I didn't realize it at the time I ordered them but both comic strips shared the newspaper page around the same time and they both ended the same year.

The first book Looking For Calvin and Hobbes is as close to a biography of the strip's creator as we have and might get for awhile. The author was hoping to get an interview with the publicity shy Watterson to lend some insight into his book, but the creator never even contacted him to refuse his request. As far as I'm concerned Calvin is one of the best comic strips ever created, but after reading this book, I'm reminded of the old adage about not wanting to meet your heroes. Watterson comes off as a pretty cold person. He was passionate about his art and he believed that his comic strip was art (and I do too) but he comes across pretty much as a cold fish when it comes to interacting with other people. Still this was a fascinating book about the author's efforts to learn more about the creator.

The other book is the first in a five volume series that will reprint the entirety of Bloom County. I'm not sure where I would rank this comic strip but it was always one of my favorites and I look forward to exploring it from the first strip to the last.

We're living in a time where some of the great comic strips are being reprinted in deluxe editions. Besides Bloom County, there is the definite Calvin and Hobbes three huge volumes that reprint the entire run of the strip. And of course there is Peanuts which started with the first volume in 1959 and right now is up to the year 1973. Especially with the early volumes there are a lot of strips that no has seen in decades as Charles Schultz never wanted to reprint his early work until it came time for the complete edition. And happily there is Pogo coming, another of my favorite strips.
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