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Syncopated: An Anthology of Nonfiction Picto-Essays Paperback – May 19, 2009

4.7 out of 5 stars 3 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The big-label relaunch of the once–self-published Syncopated anthologies (a New Yorker for the comics set) is a uniformly classy affair with only a few slow moments. As the title suggests, the book collects meaty article presented as comics. Series editor and curator Burford contributes two pieces, one of which might be the book's high point: a study of the life of Boris Rose, who built probably the world's largest collection of live jazz recordings, still locked in storage and most of it never heard by anyone but Rose himself. Alex Holden provides an amazing bit of picto-journalism in West Side Improvements, the story of Manhattan's riverside train tracks and the vibrant graffiti culture that grew in their tunnels. Nick Bertozzi's How and Why to Bale Hay is a somewhat traditional graphical memoir; Greg Cook's What We So Quietly Saw is anything but traditional, using only silhouettes to tell selected stories from inside Guantánamo Bay. Only Dave Kiersh's Welcome Home, Brave fails to fully satisfy, due to a flat narrative. An elegant and smart volume, well worth the space on the collector's shelf. (May)
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From School Library Journal

Grade 10 Up—This outstanding, innovative collection, featuring an array of newer artists, offers engaging topics for serious graphic novel enthusiasts. From baling hay and life in the New York subway to a history of the postcard and the race-based 1921 Tulsa Massacre, readers will gain new insights into some forgotten moments. The graphic styles include pen silhouettes, pen-and-ink drawings, scratchboards, and other well-executed illustrations. History buffs will appreciate this accessible collection of varied art forms and areas of investigative interest depicted in the essays.—Gregory Lum, Jesuit High School, Portland, OR
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Villard (May 19, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345505298
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345505293
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 0.4 x 10.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,280,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
His day job has nothing on "Syncopation." By day, Brendan Burford is a normal, overworked, underpaid editor at King Features, and once night falls, his editorial senses awaken and the tick, tock of his office clock syncopates in creative rhythym...

At first glance, "Syncopated" is just another collection of newly popular illustrated fiction. For years, comic books, comic strips, and Europe appreciated and fed the art form. Today, it is different. With Harvey Pekar receiving incredulous acclaim from 'experts', the market and doors have opened. Having read Pekar's work, I appreciate very little of it, and "Syncopated" is far superior. Burford has gathered 16 picto essays and the topics discussed range from baling hay (and a new appreciation of it) to the story of the Dvorak keyboard. Inbetween, are delightful tales that might appear on "The Rest of the Story" or in Readers Digest. The storytelling ranges form standard 3 x 3 panels to full page panels, and yet few of the artists would be deemed mainstream.

You will not cry. You may laugh. Once you read this, you will put it down, and realize that Mr Burford has outdone Pekar, and thus, "Syncopated" becomes a victory celebration.

Thanks.
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Format: Paperback
Great comics impress with their artwork and pithy writing and this collection is no exception, with cartoonists like Rina Piccolo, Nate Powell and Brendan Burford getting to stretch their creative legs across the pages.

But the most impressive part of the "picto-essays" is that they leave you with something to think about, long after you have finished reading (which, in my case, was at two minutes to midnight, having devoured the book in one sitting).

Because of this, I'm off to wikipedia to research the Tulsa Race Riots of 1921, I'll be delving into my computer to see how I can switch to the Dvorak way of typing and I'll never see hay bales in the same way again.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this book gives you the opportunity to read traditional text topics and a comic format. interesting.
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