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October 23, 2010 / Leslie

Review: The Peanuts Collection

The Peanuts CollectionThe Peanuts Collection by Nat Gertler

Treasures From The World’s Most Beloved Comic Strip
Genre: Comics, Graphic Novel
Format: Hardcover Book
Publish Date: October 25, 2010
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company
Rating: 5 of 5

Description:This fully authorized, one-of-a-kind illustrated book celebrates the 60th anniversary of the world’s most beloved comic strip characters. A compendium of rare materials from the Charles M. Schulz Museum and family archives, The Peanuts Collection comes in a sturdy slipcase and features high-quality reproductions of original sketches, comics, and photographs from the world of Peanuts. Removable film cels, stickers, and booklets are included, as well as reproduction prints of Peanuts artwork ready for framing.

The comic strip Peanuts ran for almost 50 years in 2,600 newspapers, a record number. During those years 18,000 strips were published. When Charles Schultz fell ill in 1999 new strips ended. Readers still wanted to see Peanuts in the comic section even if they weren’t new. As a result the strip still appears in over 2,200 newspapers. Charlie Brown, Snoopy, Lucy and the gang are now firmly a part of pop culture. This beautiful book is the ultimate collection for Peanuts’ fans.

I grew up reading Peanuts, listening to Snoopy vs the Red Baron, watching the Holiday Specials; I thought I knew everything there was to know about them. Well, I was wrong. This collection is a wealth of information. Longtime fans will find many familiar items plus much new material, some of which has never before been seen by the public.

The book begins with a forward from Schultz’s daughter and a note from the author. After that it’s divided into about 30 two-page sections. Each section focuses on one of the characters or holidays or something from Peanuts’ pop culture. About a third of each section is text with the rest artwork, illustrations, photos and removable materials such as reproductions of sketches, letters, stickers, coloring book, prints of the Peanuts characters and much more. The text is filled with fascinating detail about the creation and evolution of the characters.

We learn that neither Lucy nor Linus was part of the original Peanuts crew. In their early years they were very young children and soon grew up to be an important part of the strip. We also learn that Snoopy started out as just a dog. Not a beagle, not a WWI flying ace, just a dog. Eventually he evolved to be superior to the kids in the strip. It was way back in 1960 when Charles Schultz integrated the comics page by introducing Franklin, a ground breaking move. There’s an entire section on the good causes the Peanuts gang promoted. This is just a small sample of what is covered in this collection.

What I found most striking was the high quality artwork and the beautiful layout. If you are of a certain age this book will not only entertain you but will bring back lots of memories. I’ve read it through twice already and I’m still noticing new things. This is the type of book you need to see to appreciate.

Following is a gallery of photos I took of some of the pages and removable reproductions. Click for a larger image.

Highly recommended for Peanuts fans young and old. An excellent gift book.
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Where to buy this book.
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Source: Review Copy provided by the publisher.

2 Comments

Leave a Comment
  1. Sherry / Oct 24 2010 6:09 pm

    You are cordially invited to add a link to your book reviews for the week at my Saturday Review of Books at Semicolon. It’s a sort of round-up of bloggers’ book reviews each week on Saturday:
    http://www.semicolonblog.com/?p=11766

    Like

  2. bermudaonion / Oct 25 2010 7:00 am

    I got this last week and can’t wait to read it! I love Peanuts!!

    Like

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