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Was Superman a Spy?: And Other Comic Book Legends Revealed Paperback – April 28, 2009
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You also learn about some of the biggest foibles in comic book history such as why some print runs were pulped and what happened to the mysterious Warlock issue left in the back of a cab. Split into 3 sections (DC, Marvel, and Other Comic publishers) it is a light read you can pick-up at any point. Overall it was a fun read and look into the history and mysteries behind comic books. Recommend for comic and pop culture enthusiasts.
If you're a serious comic book fan, you'll find so many wonderful surprises and "I never knew that!" moments in here. If you're just a casual comic book reader, you'll still find things of interest here as well (though many of the more detailed surprises may not mean as much to you since you don't know the characters). Brian did a great job here and the book is nicely laid out. Be prepared to go through this one in one sitting.
Did I say compulsively readable? You bet. The stories are short enough that you find yourself saying, "Just one more" time and time again, until you've finished the book faster than you imagined you would. Was Superman a Spy? covers decades of comics lore, including the creations of its most pivotal and defining heroes. Along the way, it covers the whys and hows of many industry decisions, shows how business motives often trumped creative ones, examines the "could-have-beens" and "almost weres" of the format, and looks at how human foibles and strengths played into the creation of comics.
The book is divided up into three sections: DC, Marvel, and then a roundup of all the other companies. Some might see this as a slight to the indies and the lesser-known publishers, but at least Cronin gives ample time to many different characters, creators, and companies. That his book mirrors the focus of the marketplace seems natural.
Some of the stories inside are well-tread for most longtime comics readers (the creator of Wonder Woman, and her truth-cajoling magic lasso, was also the inventor of the lie detector; the sad and complicated story behind EC Comics' troubles), but many are fascinating looks into the behind-the-scenes discussions and battles that went on in the industry (the creation of gay comics characters, for example).
Because Cronin is such a swift storyteller, one who gets to the point quickly and without cheekiness or coy rambling, Was Superman a Spy?Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
it's ok, not what i was really expecting as far as comic book information
it's still an OK read
The book is a good starting point for further research in the comic book history field both online and through traditional book methods. Read morePublished 8 months ago by Francisco Hilario Jr.
Awesome book filled with tons of fun comic book facts. If you're comic book fan you'll love it.Published 13 months ago by manny
It was interesting and easy to read but some of the inside stories weren't all that interesting.Published 14 months ago by Amazon Customer
At first I was reading this book straight through, but that is not necessary because it is a collection of anecdotes based on the history of comic books. Read morePublished on November 10, 2013 by Matt Anderson
This gives a great history of the comic book industry, it is annotated, well written and interesting to read. Read morePublished on July 6, 2013 by BadassEX-Sailor