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A Charlie Brown Christmas: The Making of a Tradition Hardcover – October 22, 2013

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A Charlie Brown Christmas: The Making of a Tradition + It's the Great Pumpkin: The Making of a Television Classic + Charlie Brown's Christmas Stocking (Peanuts Seasonal)
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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

No holiday season would be complete without watching Charlie Brown, Linus, Lucy, Snoopy, and the rest of the Peanuts gang give a forgotten tree a little love, recite the Christmas story, and sing "Silent Night."

For nearly fifty years, since first airing in December 1965, A Charlie Brown Christmas has been one of America's most beloved television shows and is a holiday television staple. Every year millions of fans tune in to the Emmy-winning Christmas special featuring Vince Guaraldi's iconic jazz score and Charles Schulz's Peanuts characters as they remind Charlie Brown, and all of us, of the true meaning of Christmas.

A Charlie Brown Christmas: The Making of a Tradition is a lushly illustrated tribute to the beloved television classic that takes readers behind-the-scenes of the Peanuts holiday special. It includes the script of A Charlie Brown Christmas, more than two hundred full-color pieces of original animation art, Vince Guaraldi's original score and publication notes for the songs "Christmas Time is Here" and "Linus and Lucy," and a look at the making of the feature from producer Lee Mendelson and original animator, the late Bill Melendez. The two share their personal memories and charming reminiscences on the Christmas special and reflect on their three decades of working with Peanuts creator, Charles M. Schulz.

A Charlie Brown Christmas: The Making of a Tradition is a delightful and fitting salute to the holiday special that never fails to deepen your love of Christmas, touch your heart, and give you hope.

About the Author

Charles M. Schulz, the most popular cartoonist in history, published comic strips in 2,600 newspapers worldwide and won several prestigious awards, including the Congressional Medal of Honor. Mr. Schulz died on February 12, 2000, the night before his farewell Peanuts comic strip was published.

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 192 pages
  • Publisher: It Books; Reprint edition (October 22, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062272144
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062272140
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 0.7 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #681,102 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Charles M. Schulz was born November 25, 1922 in Minneapolis. His destiny was foreshadowed when an uncle gave him, at the age of two days, the nickname Sparky (after the racehorse Spark Plug in the newspaper strip Barney Google).

In his senior year in high school, his mother noticed an ad in a local newspaper for a correspondence school, Federal Schools (later called Art Instruction Schools). Schulz passed the talent test, completed the course and began trying, unsuccessfully, to sell gag cartoons to magazines. (His first published drawing was of his dog, Spike, and appeared in a 1937 Ripley's Believe It Or Not! installment.) Between 1948 and 1950, he succeeded in selling 17 cartoons to the Saturday Evening Post--as well as, to the local St. Paul Pioneer Press, a weekly comic feature called Li'l Folks. It was run in the women's section and paid $10 a week. After writing and drawing the feature for two years, Schulz asked for a better location in the paper or for daily exposure, as well as a raise. When he was turned down on all three counts, he quit.

He started submitting strips to the newspaper syndicates. In the spring of 1950, he received a letter from the United Feature Syndicate, announcing their interest in his submission, Li'l Folks. Schulz boarded a train in June for New York City; more interested in doing a strip than a panel, he also brought along the first installments of what would become Peanuts--and that was what sold. (The title, which Schulz loathed to his dying day, was imposed by the syndicate). The first Peanuts daily appeared October 2, 1950; the first Sunday, January 6, 1952.

Diagnosed with cancer, Schulz retired from Peanuts at the end of 1999. He died on February 13, 2000, the day before Valentine's Day--and the day before his last strip was published--having completed 17,897 daily and Sunday strips, each and every one fully written, drawn, and lettered entirely by his own hand--an unmatched achievement in comics.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By grumpydan VINE VOICE on January 15, 2014
Format: Hardcover
This is a book for fans of the Peanuts and especially A Charlie Brown Christmas. I am a big fan and even went to David Benoit’s Charlie Brown Christmas jazz concert this past year. This book explains how the first Peanuts cartoon came to be and the doubts the producers had when it was completed. I think it surprised everyone involved how much a big hit it has become. There are interviews with Lee Mendelson and Bill Menendez. There are also remembrances with some of the children involved. Also included in this 192 page book are the sheet music to “Christmas Time is Here” and Linus and Lucy. And finally, the entire script with illustrations complete the book. I enjoyed it but was disappointed that this is a reprint of a book that was published thirteen years ago.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Cheryl Koch VINE VOICE on October 23, 2013
Format: Hardcover
I can remember watching all of the Charlie Brown television specials and reading all of the comics. These were some of my favorite comics to read. I felt sorry for Charlie Brown. He never got to kick the football and Lucy was so mean to him. Of course Lucy was mean to everyone.

If you are a fan of Charlie Brown and the gang and of Charles M. Schulz then you have to pick up a copy of this book. You will relive your childhood again (trust me the best parts of it are here). It is amazing how the A Charlie Brown Christmas special came to be created. It almost did not. The original idea was formed from the documentary "A Boy Named Charlie Brown". Coca-Cola was not sold on the documentary but instead was looking for a Christmas special and thus A Charlie Brown Christmas was created.

This book gives a nice insight into Mr. Schulz's life, the comic, the characters, and everything else Charlie related. This book would make the perfect gift.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joelene Rodriguez on November 25, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I gave this books to a friend who is a Charlie Brown Christmas aficionado, and he was very impressed with the facts/details included in this book that were new to him! It was a perfect gift!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sherie on April 19, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
if you are a Peanuts fan, this is a must have!! Especially if you own the Book and the Movie, this goes beyond both of those and explains a lot of the ideas behind both.
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Format: Hardcover
I have been a fan of Charlie Brown for most of my life. Christmas doesn't seem like Christmas until I've watched A Charlie Brown Christmas on television. So you can imagine my excitement when I received this book chronicling the making of the show. This book doesn't really go in depth about the Peanuts creator Charles Schulz, but it's more of a behind the scenes look at how this cartoon came into being.

This book contains interviews from some of the people who worked closely with Schulz as well as reflections from some of the people who worked on A Charlie Brown Christmas. And while all that is interesting to read, I found the rough sketches, the illustrated script, and the music from the television show just as fascinating. There is something about the simplicity of these characters that speaks to the heart of millions of people. This show has been on the air for almost 50 years and there is a good reason for it.

If you're a fan of this show like I am, then you'll want to read this book. It's perfect for all ages. The younger kids will enjoy reading the illustrated script, while the older ones will enjoy reading about the making of a tradition.
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By happygirl on August 23, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Really nice behind-the-scenes account of a beloved Christmas tradition. I enjoyed learning about the children who were the voices of the characters and seeing the hand-drawn storyboards. I'd recommend for any Peanuts fan.
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Format: Hardcover
This book was a pure joy. From the music, the the illustrated script at the end, to the behind the scenes photos and commentary! I loved it all. A great gift that I will be giving to my mom for sure! Great Gift idea!
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