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Monday, October 31, 2011

1001 Comics You Must Read Before You Die: The Ultimate Guide to Comic Books, Graphic Novels and Manga Book Review

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1001 Comics You Must Read Before You Die: The Ultimate Guide to Comic Books, Graphic Novels and Manga Book Review

About the Book: Visually amazing, this critical history of comic books, manga, and graphic novels is a must-have for any comic buff or collector.  Over the centuries, comic books and their offshoots, such as graphic novels, manga, and bandes dessinĂ©es, have evolved into a phenomenally popular, influential, and unique art form with which we can express our opinions, our fantasies, our nightmares, and our dreams. In short: comics are emphatically no longer just for kids. This diverse, constantly evolving medium is truly coming into its own in the 21st century, from Hollywood's blockbuster adaptations of super-powered caped crusaders to the global spread of Japan's manga and its spinoffs, and from award-winning graphic novels such as Maus and Persepolis to new forms such as online webcomix. This volume is the perfect introduction to a dynamic and globally popular medium, embracing every graphic genre worldwide to assess the very best works of sequential art, graphic literature, comics, and comic strips, past and present.
An international survey, this engaging volume is organized according to the year of first publication in the country of origin. An opening section acknowledges pioneering pre-1900 masterpieces, followed by sections divided by decade, creating a fascinating year-by-year chronicle of the graphic medium worldwide. The material includes the very earliest one-off albums to the latest in online comics and features some series and characters that have run for decades.

Packed with fantastic reproductions of classic front covers and groundbreaking panels, this book is visually stunning as well as a trove of information--perfect for the passionate collector and casual fan alike.

Our Take: We're HUGE nerds here at the Legion.  That being said, when we see a book that touts 1001 comics you should read before you die...well, we had to check it out!  This hardcover book is short, fat and THICK!  Its over 950 pages of listings and explanations for each of the 1001 selections.  We agree fully with some and not so much with others.  A few we agree with..Johnny the Homicidal Maniac, The Goon, Hellboy, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, the various Batman selections and the Walking Dead.  These are all great and valid are many others, but there is a distinct lack of Grendel in this book.  I take great umbridge with this fact and say that you absolutely MUST read Grendel if you consider yourself a fan of the comic book genre.  The scope is epic!  Otherwise, a great book and a fun way to get into some comics you may not be familiar with.  I was introduced to quite a few manga and more obscure books I wasn't familiar with.  Oh, and super geeks will love the forward by Monty Python alum Terry Gilliam!

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