From Publishers Weekly
This slipcased, scrapbook-style homage to Charles M. Schulz's Peanuts commemorates the comic strip's 60th anniversary. Mined from the Schulz museum and family archives, photographs, booklets, prints, and removable reproductions (such as a Peanuts-themed "scrapbook" for the Ford Falcon) document the evolution of characters like Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Snoopy. The volume of merchandise on display makes evident the comic's cultural influence, but readers may be surprised to learn of the comic's social impact: a 1968 letter (included as a reproduction) implores Schulz to diversify the cast: "It occurred to me today that the introduction of Negro children... could happen with a minimum of impact" (Schulz then introduced Franklin). And following the publication of Silent Spring in 1962, Lucy mentions that her baseball bat is signed by Rachel Carson. Discussions of Schulz's 2000 death and Peanuts themes like "unrequited love" may bring a tear to the eyes of steadfast fans. The comic's spirit of quiet wisdom resonates through the carefully compiled memorabilia. (Oct.)
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It’s been a decade since the death of cartoonist Charles Schulz, but the popularity of his comic strip Peanuts shows no signs of abating: reprints of vintage strips appear in 2,200 newspapers, TV adaptations remain perennially popular, and Charlie Brown and his friends continue to adorn T-shirts worldwide. The millions of die-hard fans who sustain the strip’s success will delight in this lavish offering, which draws on the holdings of the Charles M. Schulz Museum and the family’s archives. The succinctly informative text, along with a representative handful of strips, is the crux of the volume, but the bulk is devoted to a motley yet fascinating assemblage of memorabilia: rare photos, preliminary sketches, toys and games, promotional materials, and advertisements featuring the characters. Scrapbook-type items are housed in pouches, including coloring-book pages, a facsimile animation cell, trading cards, and even correspondence from fans. The result is a treasure trove for Peanutophiles. Libraries that have had circulation success with the recent volumes reprinting the entire 50-year run of Peanuts should supplement that series with this lovingly curated tribute. --Gordon Flagg
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