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ALEC: The Years Have Pants (A Life-Size Omnibus) Paperback – January 18, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
"Witty and thoughtful ... a great and epic comic documentary novel like no other." --Publishers Weekly (starred review)
"A profound piece ... Campbell makes it feel like the greatest adventure imaginable." --Alex Pappademas, GQ<br /><br />
"Eddie Campbell's Alec stories were among the first of the modern era of autobiographical comics, and they still rate among the best -- witty, brilliantly illustrated, self-mocking without ever being mopey or pathetic, and most importantly, forever changing style to suit the needs of the story. After many years of sporadic availability, they're finally all available in one volume ... Watching Campbell's storytelling and approach to art progress and evolve as these stories unfold is as close as you can get to watching a real human life change on the page. One of the must-own releases of the year." --The AV Club
Top Customer Reviews
In “Alec,” Eddie Campbell compiles decades of his autobiographical works in one volume, from his young bachelor days as a Scottish member of the wild King Canute bar crowd in Great Britain, where he scrapes out a meager existence in a manual labor metalworking job. He dates, hones his artistic craft, and begins a journey of self-discovery. We follow him through marriage, children, and the world of self-publishing to see him emerge a mature family man and reasonably-famous artist based in Australia. We even get behind the scenes stories of Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, and other famous writers and artists he comes in contact with. Through it all Eddie Campbell, through his alter ego Alec MacGarry, shares with us the ups and downs, through good drawings and hurried, the real and the surreal. Most of all, however, we share with him the honesty of life that he unfailingly paints on each page. There is very little self-importance here. We get the randomness and seeming irrelevance of the day-to-day through the colorful yet very real characters that flow through Alec’s life.Read more ›
Campbell first began drawing his autobiographical comics back in the `70s. To protect the identity of his friends and family, he gave everyone a different name--including himself ("Alec MacGarry"). Alec has stood in for Eddie even since, as Campbell has continued through multiple publishers and multiple venues of his life. All of them (except for The Fate of the Artist, which is still in print from First Second) are found in Alec: "The Years Have Pants".
Today, it's a matter of course to see a comic biography. Comics memoirs are almost a dime a dozen, it seems. But that shouldn't negate the pure joy of experiencing a true master of the form explore the full range of its possibilities, from the mundane to the extraordinary. It's interesting to watch an intelligent, well-thought-out man delve into the ups and downs of his own life with care.
Campbell is a comics veteran, so he peppers his tales with stories of the growth of the industry itself (the mid-`80s burst that sees Alan Moore, Art Spiegelman, and others exploding with greatness coincides with the birth of Alec's first child, a nice parallel that Campbell doesn't miss out on).
The bottom line is this: If you want to see what a master of comics memoir does at the top of his form, Alec: "The Years Have Pants" is the book to read. Its 600 pages are a revelation of humanity.
-- John Hogan
I can say it's great to have so much of his material in one place, and even at the hardcover price it is cheaper than buying all of his books separately.
I can also say that I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of the book itself. For example, it is not cloth bound or fancy, but instead has a very simple, no frills binding. It is simple, but solid, and stands out well among the other books on my shelf.
I was also expecting a book this thick to have thin pages, slightly better than newsprint. Instead, the pages are luxuriantly thick, allowing Campbell's simple artwork to really stand out.
If the folks at Top Shelf happen to read this review, please, please put something like this together for Glenn Dakin's comics as well.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
My first book of this type I thought graphic novels were always about super heroes, dark villains or other things that don't grip my imagination. Read morePublished on March 1, 2014 by Christine Chambers
There are some books that makes me nervous when they are not accessible on my shelfs. I may not read them often, but - like a dear friend - I need to know they are available if the... Read morePublished on March 20, 2013 by Rodolfo S. Filho
Todo a sido perfecto. Ha llegado antes de lo previsto y en perfectas condiciones. No tengo ninguna queja, muy al contrario.Published on February 3, 2013 by Ruth García Martín
At nearly 700 pages, you have to be a pretty interesting and unique person to hold a reader's interest in your daily comings and goings. Read morePublished on April 16, 2011 by meeah