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Saga of the Swamp Thing, Book 1 Hardcover – February 10, 2009

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Hardcover, February 10, 2009
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Vertigo (February 17, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1401220827
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401220822
  • Product Dimensions: 7.1 x 0.7 x 10.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #750,739 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"An influential fantasy author for almost a quarter century."

About the Author

Alan Moore is one of the most respected and admired writers in comics today, with a host of industry awards and accolades. His credits include The Ballad of Halo Jones, Captain Britain, The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, Lost Girls, Promethea, Swamp Thing, Tom Strong, V For Vendetta and Watchmen. John Totleben has drawn for such titles as Sandman, Miracleman and Heavy Metal. --This text refers to an alternate Hardcover edition.

Customer Reviews

Would recommend this book to any comic lover of the Swamp Thing series.
Fredrick A Beickel
This month, we're reading Saga of the Swamp Thing, Book One, collecting Alan Moore's first issues.
John M. Burt
And the art... the art is absolutely stunning, perfectly fitting into Moore's moody writing.
G. Saladino

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

50 of 55 people found the following review helpful By mcg480 on February 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The 8 issues of Saga of the Swamp Thing contained in this volume (#20-27) contain one of the best story arcs in comic history. Anyone who is a fan of Alan Moore (The Watchmen, League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, etc.) should put this book high on their list of priorities.

This volume has two major boons over the previously released paperback version of the TPB from 1998:

1. The obvious one: the hardcover is nice for damage mitigation, and is a nice presentation.
2. The important one: the hardcover version contains issue #20, which is actually the first one written by Moore (but illustrated by Dan Day not Stephen Bissette), the *previous version* of the TPB does not.

That being said, I was disappointed that they didn't go with a higher grade paper for this hardcover volume, something glossy would have been nice. Unfortunately it is the same newspaper-print stock type paper that was used in the paperback (were it not for this I would have rated it 5 stars easily).

Another issue, probably due to the fact that I pre-ordered the book and it was shipped the day it was released: the cover feels sticky, like the ink isn't completely dry. We'll see if that goes away after a few days.

All in all a great book. If you don't already have the paperback TPB definitely pick this up. Even if you do, you will probably want to get this version for issue #20 if you are a die hard Moore fan.

*edit* Decided to update this based on a user comment. I noted that the previous version of the TBD does not have issue 20. The new version, basically the same as this hardback, does contain that issue.
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37 of 40 people found the following review helpful By Perry Beider on January 29, 2010
Format: Hardcover
This book reprints issues #20 - 27. The first story-arc ends with issue #24. This book LEAVES OUT THE LAST FOUR WORDS OF THAT STORY! The story ends with a full-page picture of Swamp Thing with arms outstretched, head titled up toward the sky, with the sun setting behind him. In the original comic book, and the first paperback reproduction, the upper left-hand corner of the page has the words "...and meet the sun." Those words are the poignant climax of a five-issue story, and DC somehow managed to omit them, ending the story in mid-sentence.

I know it sounds bizarre, but as Dave Barry would say, I am not making this up. You can read about it elsewhere on the web, including the blog of artist Stephen Bissette and the DC message boards.

Having said that, yes these are absolutely great stories. (The dream sequence in one of the chapters brought tears to my eyes.) I wouldn't tell you not to buy the book because of those missing words...especially now that you can put them in mentally yourself. But you might want to wait until they do a second (hopefully corrected!) printing...or look for one of those first paperback editions (which won't have issue #20, though).
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53 of 61 people found the following review helpful By RandA on February 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I have to say I was greatly disappointed with this release. I've been a fan of the Moore/Bissette/Totleben run of Swamp Thing since it first came out in the mid-1980s. When I heard about this collection (which I assumed meant the eventual release of all the issues in hardback), I was so excited.

Imagine my disappointment when I took the plastic wrapping off the volume.

First, the pages are printed on the same paper stock as the tradepaperback editions. I know the price of the volume reflects this low-quality paper, but I would have been happy to pay extra to get a high-quality product. Isn't that the point in buying a hardback of something you can get in a paperback for significantly less cost?

Second, the dustjacket was obviously designed by someone unfamiliar with the limitations of offset printing. As I know from my profession, you do NOT print on wax paper type paper. The ink will never completely dry on this type of paper. Unfortunately, that's the material they decided to use for this volume's dustjacket. It's sticky because of the wet ink, and a moderately-pressured wipe of the dustjacket will result in a black smudged finger or cloth. I have yet to risk placing it in my bookshelf with the rest of my volumes, for fear of it leaving ink on the volumes that sandwich.

All that said, would I buy future volumes of this hardback series? Absolutely...but only because I'm such a hardcore fan. And these issues ARE completely amazing. However, unless you're also a hardcore fan, I would have to recommend the tradepaperbacks as a more reasonable option for the money-versus-quality rationale.
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23 of 30 people found the following review helpful By James Dawson on July 10, 2010
Format: Hardcover
What a cheap and shoddy book this is. Once again, Vertigo has proven that the company is more interested in cutting corners to save pennies and maximize profits, instead of treating collections of its greatest comics with the respect the work deserves. (For further evidence of this shameful practice, take a look at the awful paper Vertigo uses in its FABLES trade paperback collections. For shame!)

The paper in this Swamp Thing collection is better than the newsprint used in the original 1980s comic books it reprints, but not by much. It's not glossy at all, which means most black areas look flat and drab. Because of the way this paper absorbs ink, it's often difficult to read the frequent white text on black captions, just like in the original comics. The paper is not even opaque, for cripe's sake, showing a lot of bleed-through that makes you wonder if the book is acidifying and deterioriating before your very eyes.

Also, the waxy-feeling dustjacket is printed on some paper of unknown origin that seems specifically designed NOT to be used as a dustjacket. When a book doesn't even feel good to hold in your hands, that's saying something.

Story-wise, these are some of the best comic books ever written/drawn, deserving good printing on quality paper at the very least. (And why there's no Absolute edition of this series is beyond me.)

It's a damned shame that Vertigo has so little regard for their best comics that they keep putting out third-rate collections like this one. Save your money, and hope for the day when a new management team will have more interest in quality control.
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