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30 Years of Laughs & Lasagna: The Life & Times of a Fat, Furry Legend! (Garfield) Hardcover – October 28, 2008

4.7 out of 5 stars 21 customer reviews

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Frequently Bought Together

  • 30 Years of Laughs & Lasagna: The Life & Times of a Fat, Furry Legend! (Garfield)
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  • Garfield's Guide to Everything
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  • Garfield's Sunday Finest: 35 Years of My Best Sunday Funnies
Total price: $55.09
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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 4–8—Davis calls Garfield "a human in a catsuit," and the sarcastic feline's wry, egotistical observations and love of lasagna, donuts, and naps are a winning and enduring formula. Garfield's popularity has not waned over the years, and this may be because the jokes, and the drawing style, have barely changed. Readers will find plenty of slapstick humor and visual gags in this collection to entertain them. Throughout the book, Davis offers occasional insights about his career and the development of Garfield. They are written in simple language, and are seemingly aimed at the cat's young fans, who will certainly check this out.—Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library, NY
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

This judicious selection from Garfield’s three-decade run well demonstrates why it’s the world’s most popular comic strip. Based on cultural knowledge TV has made universal as well as on elements of human-animal, man-woman, and cat-dog relations that have been milked for laughs since time immemorial, Davis’ gags are about as surefire as you can get. Cast down the middle, never deviating to the brainy left or the raunchy right (though note the outrageous double entendre on page 57), they reliably bowl over most, sometimes all of the readers who get in their way. Of course, comics cognoscenti seldom say anything good about Garfield, complaining that Davis doesn’t use the medium creatively. Such carpers could probably do with more from Davis like the wordless Sunday strips on pages 71, 75, 133, and 165, which possess an Ernie Kovacsian charm. They should also glom the handful of details from the strips that are enlarged to fill whole pages and wind up looking like outtakes from the once-vilified, now-reverenced Nancy. Is Jim Davis the Ernie Bushmiller of tomorrow? --Ray Olson
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 - 13 years
  • Grade Level: 4 - 8
  • Series: Garfield
  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Ballantine Books; 1 edition (October 28, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0345503791
  • ISBN-13: 978-0345503794
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 1 x 7.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #188,615 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I have only two favorite comic strips: Garfield and Calvin & Hobbes. I go for Calvin & Hobbes for political, social, and economic commentary (and also for Calvin's many imaginary adventures). And I go for Garfield for pure slapstick and ironic humor. Garfield never dwelves into politics, religion, social science, or the current American economy (it did only a few times back in the 70's and 80's).

I admire the fat orange cat, who is really an anti-heroic anti-cat. He drinks coffee, he never chases mice, he eats Pizza and Lasagna, he watches TV all day, and now he has fun with a cellphone and the Internet. But he does eat cat food, hates dogs, sing on a fence, play with yarn, etc. And let's not forget the rest of the cast. Dim-witted Odie and nerdy Jon Arbuckle (who now has Liz as a girlfriend) accompany Garfield throughout almost every daily strip. Liz, Pooky, Nermal, Arlene, Irma, the mail carrier, and Jon's farm family make up the rest of the cast.

I know the comics from 2001 to present are weaker compared to the golden age of Garfield comics (the 80's and early 90's), but they still make me smile every time. And this book, "Garfield: 30 Years of Laughs & Lasagna" should be with every Garfield fan (whether die-hard or modest). It sums up the history of the comic's publication, the creation of major characters, Jim Davis's favorite strips, and more. But what happens when Garfield is no more? I doubt that this would end in a few years, but I'll still remember the pure delight that I've had with the fat orange cat and his many diverse companions.
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Format: Hardcover
My son got this book as a gift from grandpa this Christmas and is thrilled with it. It can't even begin to cover everything in the history of the famous fat cat, but it has enough of the early and classic strips to earn a spot on any Garfield lover's bookshelf. Chapters are arranged by decades; memorable strips include the first Garfield comic ever published, Garfield eating straight from the lasagna pan, "Banzai!", and a visit with Doc Boy, Jon's not-too-swift brother out on the farm. This hardcover edition has a full-color cover and additional dustjacket, perfect for gift-giving. Jim Davis puts his 30 favorite garfield strips at the end of the book; the foreword is by Dean Young, creator of "Blondie".
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm at an age where I can legitimately claim the title of 'old grouch'.
This is, until I start reading this book.
I mostly preform the Garfield's more modern look. But the wonderful,
surly humor is the same.
In my mind, humor helps to make the world go around. And Garfield
is one of the reasons, it's spinning with a smile.

Morris C
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I couldn't read the whole thing because my niece wouldn't let go of it long enough. There's no wasted space in this book. It is packed full of comic strips ~ many, many black-and-white ones and some full pages of colored Sunday cartoons. There are also little quips and personal stories by Jim Davis. I enjoyed reading about the pranks that went on between Davis, Dean Young, and other well-known cartoonists. Great fun!
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Format: Hardcover
It's hard to believe that Garfield is 30 years old this year. As a long time appreciator of the cat who has come to exemplify the phrase "Couch Cat", such retrospectives are must reads and must haves.

30 Years of Laugh and Lasagna is just that, without the bib and messy food. Davis and company break the strip down decade by decade and give prime examples why Garfield is so popular. I still laugh at the Bad potato strip even though it is so darn silly! Simple, and obvious, but that is comic strip humor at its' best. Inbetween the humor, Davis writes short descriptions of the decades and his history. I never knew that he was Tom Ryans' assistant on Tumbleweeds, another strip I enjoy.

The icing on the cake, the chocolate on the cookie, the peanut butter on the jam, is the 30 faves that Davis includes on the end. Davis is no one dimensional cartoonist, clearly, he even includes a dentist joke (feed the teeth!).

You'll laugh until your lasagnas cooked.

Tim Lasiuta
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have been a fan of Garfield since I was a little kid. This book brings back classics I recognize, and new ones I haven't had a chance to follow (local newspapers don't seem to carry Garfield anymore -- I even thought Jim Davis had stopped drawing Garfield!).

Quality book, a must have for Garfield fans.
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Format: Hardcover
I read this together with my two tween sons. We all loved it. The best reason to buy this book rather than other Garfield volumes is for the "behind the scenes" comments on the artistic and creative process -- Jim Davis' inspiration, his work habits, Garfield changing over time, etc. My favorite comment was this:

"Chuck Jones, the great animator, said that every artist has a hundred thousand bad drawings in him, and the sooner you get those out of the way, every drawing is going to be good. [...] The skill is born from a love of drawing. The more you enjoy it, the more your draw. The more you draw, the better you get."

My kids are both interested in drawing, and this encourages them to keep drawing even though the results aren't perfect every time.
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