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The Great Treasury of Christmas Comic Book Stories Hardcover – December 2, 2010

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Back in the 1940s and ’50s, when comic books’ readership skewed far younger than it does today, Christmas-themed comics were a cherished annual tradition. Comics archaeologist Yoe has unearthed nearly two dozen of these seasonal stories for this nostalgic compilation. Lighthearted secularism is the order of the day: the only religious selection is a rather stodgy account of the Nativity. The standouts are five yarns by Walt Kelly, whose “How Santa Got His Red Suit” shows that if he hadn’t created Pogo, he could have moved on to a successful career in children’s books (as did Richard Scarry, who here recasts “The Shoemaker and the Elves” with Santa’s elves). The other comics auteur represented is Little Lulu’s John Stanley, whose five contributions are more broadly humorous: in one, the North Pole polar bears try to convince Santa to let them pull his sleigh, despite their inability to fly. The collection will be enjoyed most by those in the age group the comics were originally aimed at—children young enough to still believe in Santa—but reminiscing adults will likely be charmed by the whimsy as well. Grades 1-4. --Gordon Flagg

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: IDW Publishing (December 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1600107737
  • ISBN-13: 978-1600107733
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 8.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #708,371 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Vice magazine calls Craig Yoe the "Indiana Jones of comics historians." Publishers Weekly says he's the "archivist of the ridiculous and sublime" and calls his work "brilliant." The Onion calls him "the celebrated designer." The Library Journal, "a comics guru." BoingBoing hails him "a fine cartoonist and a comic book historian of the first water." Yoe was Creative Director/Vice President/General Manager of Jim Henson's Muppets, and a Creative Director at Nickelodeon and Disney. Craig has won an Eisner Award and the Gold Medal from the Society of Illustrators.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
You'd have to be a true grinch to dislike this collection of great, classic comic book stories about Christmas. Editor Craig Yoe has assembled a very nice assortment of favorites from comics' Golden Age, the majority of which come from the John Stanley, Walt Kelly, and Richard Scarry. Other creators appearing in these pages include Dan Noonan, Frank Johnson, Klaus Nordling, Al Fago, Dan Gormley, Mike Sekowsky, and the wonderful Alberto Giolitti, whose artwork on "The Christmas Story" is truly brilliant.

The 21 stories here run from simple delightfully simple ("A Mouse in the House," "Ticky Tack, the Littlest Reindeer") to nostalgic looks at a long-ago time ("A Letter for Santa," "Joe and Jennifer in The Wonderful Snowhouse") to much beloved classics ("The Night Before Christmas," "A Christmas Carol"). It's with the classics that the artists really show off their skills, creating visually stunning representations that adults will appreciate probably even more than kids.

The rest of the stories are, as one would expect, cheerful examples of the spirit of Christmas. This book would make a wonderful addition to many children's libraries.

All that's really missing, from an adult perspective, is text that would frame each of the stories properly. Each story is presented with no context, no description, no background. Kids won't miss that, but adults like me would love to know more about the creators, the stories, and where they came from. The reader has to check the copyright page to find out what year each story was published--it would be nice if that information had also been put on the table of contents for easier reference. Nevertheless, The Great Treasury of Christmas Comic Book Stories is a joy-filled experience for the season.

-- John Hogan
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Johnny Heering on December 10, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This hardcover book reprints Christmas comic book stories from 1945 to 1961. Most stories are taken from Santa Claus Funnies, which was published once a year by Dell Comics from 1942 to 1961. There are multiple stories by the brilliant John Stanley and Walt Kelly, with individual stories by many other creators. These are all great, heartwarming stories. Some comic book characters like Archie Andrews and Little Lulu were known for having annual Christmas comic books; you won't find any of those stories here. The only comic book characters with their own series to be featured here are Atomic Mouse and the obscure Li'l Tomboy. It's a shame that DC Comics' Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer comics aren't included, but you can't have everything. Maybe DC will publish their own Rudolph Archives someday, but who knows if they even have the rights to the character anymore?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Our family loved this book. My 23 year old son recommended it for my husband who loves comics and graphic novels. All of the family loved it and I know that it will be well read over the upcoming years. What a fun Christmas book!
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