Black & White on White paper
BISAC: Humor / Topic / Religion
This entry in the About Comics reprints of the Negro Motorist/Travelers’ Green Book series is a thick one, 128 pages filled with listings of hotels that African-American travelers could stay in, restaurants they could eat in, and shops that would serve them in 1962, when segregation legal and otherwise was still very much in place. This volume also includes articles on the fun of international travel and on New York City.
List Price: $8.99
5″ x 6.75″ (12.7 x 17.145 cm)
Black & White on Cream paper
BISAC: History / African American
Order The Green Book: 1962 Facsimile Edition from Amazon!
In the segregated US of the mid-twentieth century, African-American travelers could have a hard time finding towns where they were legally allowed to stay at night and hotels, restaurants, and service stations willing to serve them. In 1936, Victor Hugo Green published the first annual volume of The Negro Motorist Green Book. This facsimile of the 1947 edition brings you the listings and advertisements aimed at the Black travelers trying to find their way across a country where they were so rarely welcome – plus sections on “Negro Schools & Colleges” and “Negro Newspapers”, some notes on “Green Book traveling”, and a guide to GM and Ford cars of the day (with photos!)
List Price: $8.99
5″ x 6.75″
Black & White on Cream paper
BISAC: History / United States / 20th Century
The BlankTM Comic Strip Panelbook is a simple sketchbook for drawing daily-format comic strips, with four square panels on each page. Intend as a sketch-and-concept book, this handy volume will hold months worth of daily strip concepts.
(Please note: this book is not intended for final artwork, and the paper is neither archival nor acid-free.)
For twentieth century cartoonists, while art may have been their calling, golf was almost always their obsession. Much of the time spent away from the drawing board was spent on the links, with all the frustrations and quirky habits that come from trying to get a tiny ball into a distant hole. Little wonder that so many combined their vocation and their avocation, drawing cartoons that found the funny side of the game and the people who play it.
About Comics has just released a new book collecting golf cartoons from some of the most respected names in cartooning. Great Golf Gags by Classic Cartoonists includes cartoons by six top names of the newspaper and magazine cartooning world: “Peanuts” creator Charles M. Schulz, Playboy cartoonist Eldon Dedini, Dennis the Menace creator Hank Ketcham, “Two Little Nuns” and “Golf Fore Fun” cartoonist Bill O’Malley, “Big George” creator Virgil Partch, and Gus Arriola, creator of “Gordo.” Most of these cartoons are available nowhere else, often not having seen print in half a century.
“Most of these cartoons were created to celebrate the annual Pro-Am charity golf tournament that Bing Crosby used to host,” explains Nat Gertler, editor of the volume. “The tournament was very cartoonist-friendly, with various cartoonists being included in the lineup of celebrity amateur players. Starting before the launch of ‘Dennis the Menace; and going on for years after, Hank Ketcham handled the design and coordination of the tournament’s souvenir program. So it’s really not a surprise that the programs began including a fair number of cartoons… a tradition launched while Ketcham was handling the program in the 1950s and continued well into the 1980s.”
Golf tournament programs are not the only source for the cartoons. In additions to the cartoons that Schulz created for the Crosby “clambake” (as it was less formally known), there are also dozens of golfing cartoons that he did for “It’s Only a Game”, a feature that ran in newspapers in the late 1950s.
Eldon Dedini brings both his line-art cartooning and the lusher style he used in Playboy into the golf game. While the focus is on the golfers, the nymphs and fawns of his Playboy work are not entirely absent. The book’s wrap-around color cover is itself another Dedini work. Virgil Partch’s cartoons bring the same sense of awkwardness and absurdity that made his series “Big George” so popular. (Partch was such a dedicated cartoonist that, when he died, there were still six years worth of his daily panel ready to be run.)
As for Gus Arriola, Gertler notes “a lot of readers aren’t going to be familiar with Gus’s work. While his strip ‘Gordo’ was around for more than four decades, the last strip was in 1985 and it hasn’t been reprinted in a long while. But Gus was a cartoonist’s cartoonist – talk to folks who have been in the cartooning business for a while, and they’ll talk about his beautiful linework and his lovable characters. There’s only about half a dozen cartoons of his in the book, but I think people will like getting a taste of his work.”
The year was 1966, and the world was going crazy over the wham-socko superhero action that had leapt out from the comic books and onto the TV. With the internet yet to be invented, the fans of the day turned to their stationary pads and whipped off letters to the hero and to those who told his story, sending praise, complaints, questions and requests to the TV show and to the comic books. Best-selling book creator Bill Adler sifted through the letters and came up with the funniest, putting them out in a paperback that still draws praise to this day. Michael Eury’s new book Hero-a-Go-Go! says it’s a “brisk but deliriously engrossing read” and “the ultimate feel-good book”. Chris Sims at ComicsAlliance.com has called it “one of the single best pieces of Bat-ephemera,” and Al Bigley of Big Glee! told readers to “get ready to laugh!” But sadly, the book has been out of print for about half a century.
If this were anything but a press release, the story would end right there. But lucky for you, dear reader, this is a press release and we do not do such things just to depress you. No! We do such things to get you to spend money, and toward that end we are announcing a brand new reprinting of the same ol’ book under a bold new title: FanMail ’66. Now you can thrill to those mirthful missives and crusading correspondence of yesteryear, and we can thrill to getting a share of the $9.99 it will cost you!
Bill Adler created collections of kids’ letters to presidents (About Comics has already reprinted his Kids’ Letters to President Kennedy and Dear President Johnson), campers’ letters home, and fans letters to the objects of their adulation, whether that be the Beatles, the Monkees, or the Mets. He hit best-seller lists with books ranging from a collection to JFK’s humor (The Kennedy Wit) to the whodunnit Who Killed the Robins Family?
FanMail ’66 (ISBN-13: 978-1-936404-71-1) is a 128 page black-and-white paperback, 5″x8″, with a cover price of $9.99.
There’s the standard format – every page has six equal panels.
The staggered format – every page has six panels in a big panel/little panel/little panel/big panel pattern.
The graphic novel format – every page is a different layout, taken from actual comics
For those who like more complex layouts, these books are pre-ruled with light lines that will help you make the panel layout you want.
Some examples of the panel layouts you can make with the gridbook.
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Please note that neither the Panelbook nor the Gridbook are printed on archival or acid-free stock; these are meant as design and thought sketchbooks, and not as the final home for your masterpiece. Printed on 60# white stock, they handle pencils and ink pens well, but markers are apt to bleed.