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Bone: The Complete Cartoon Epic - All volumes in Single book(Black & White Edition) Paperback – September, 2004
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*Starred Review* Mere months after publishing the final installment of the long-running fantasy saga Bone, Smith collects all 13 years' worth of it in a single, massive volume. As many comics fans know, the series chronicles the adventures of the Bone cousins--plucky Fone Bone, scheming Phony Bone, and easygoing Smiley Bone-- who leave their home of Boneville and are swept up in a Tolkienesque epic of royalty, dragons, and unspeakable evil forces out to conquer humankind. The compilation makes it evident how fully formed Smith's vision was from the very beginning--although the early chapters emphasized comedy, as do the final pages, the tale quickly found its dramatic bearings. His remarkably accomplished drawing style, in the manner of such comics masters as Walt Kelly and Carl Barks, was fully formed from the start, too. Libraries that have missed out on individual Bone series titles should seize this opportunity to make up for the fact, and those who have collected the series all along will do well to acquire the collected edition to supplement or supplant those doubtless well-worn volumes. But be prepared for overdues: even the most voracious readers will be hard-pressed to get through this hefty, phone book-like tome before they're supposed to return it. Gordon Flagg
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Time Magazine: One of the Ten Greatest Grapic Novels of all Time
Publisher's Weekly: Best Book LIst
The Comics Journal: Book of the Year
American Library Association: Top 25 Graphic Novels for Young Adults
Better Homes and Gardens: 'Must Read' list
BONE combines the humor and look of early Disney movies with the scope of the Lord of the Rings cycle. While children will read BONE for its breathless adventure and sight gags, older kids and adults will appreciate the themes of blind fanaticism and corrupting power.”
BONE is storytelling at its best, full of endearing, flawed characters whose adventures run the gamut from hilarious whimsy to thrilling drama. Along the way, Smith’s musings take on a greater relevance than you’d ever expect. Grade: A.”
"Charming, character-driven fantasy with an elegant design and masterful story-telling in the tradition of Walt Kelly, Charles Schulz and Carl Barks." (starred review)
"Like Pogo, BONE has a whimsy best appreciated by adults, yet kids can enjoy it, too; and like Barks’ Donald Duck stories, BONE moves from brash humor to gripping adventure in a single panel."
Neil Gaiman (author of The Graveyard Book and Sandman)
"Jeff Smith can pace a joke better than almost anyone in comics; his dialogue is delightfulso are all his people, not to mention his animals, his villains, and even his bugs."
Matt Groening (creator of The Simpsons)
"I love BONE! BONE is great!”
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Top Customer Reviews
Hidden beneath the adventures, jokes, and great artwork also lies some social commentary. When Phoney Bone convinces the townsfolk that dragons are an immediate threat to their safety and, since he's a dragonslayer, they should give him absolute control over the town, this hits almost a little too close to home. Phoney represents greed on steroids. Other innocents get pulled into his plans for money and power (he doesn't seem too concerned with glory or the well being of society in general). Nonetheless, the entire story turns on Phoney's schemes, and they play a vital role in the plot.
Other highlights include: the Great Cow Races; Fone Bone's infatuation with Thorn; Ted the Bug (what an amazing character); the two stupid rat creature's travails with Kingdok (one of them loves quiche); the slow uncovering of Gran'ma and Thorn's true identities; Smiley Bone's pet rat creature; Fone Bone's run ins with The Great Red Dragon; the Giant Bees ("Gimmee dat Cigar!"); Phoney Bone's first very creepy run in with The Hooded One. There's plenty more. These some 1300 pages are crammed with highlights.
Bone was originally released in numerous comic books (from 1991 to 2004) which were then collected into 9 larger books, and now all nine books are compiled into this one chunky volume. This book is slightly smaller in physical size than the other books, so some of the extreme detail of the art is lost (but most people won't care). Nonetheless, here's the entire story in one big volume for one much smaller price. It's a quick and tumultuous read, and represents ten years very well spent.
my only problem is with the ONE VOLUME EDITION, and that is only if you are INTERESTED IN THE ART. the volume is smaller in size but even that isn't a real issue. the problem is with the THINNESS OF THE PAGES, the artwork from the other side shows through (kind of like the wording shows through on many bibles). this hurts smith's beautiful black and white inked drawings (to me at least), and since graphics are what makes it a graphic novel, it might be an issue for someone that doesn't get to flip through the pages before buying it.
but it is a GREAT DEAL FOR THE PRICE. and i would still prefer the cheap volume over not having it at all. (BTW, i had to have the last 2 volumes ordered through a bookstore and they came in hardback instead of softcover and they are beautiful with a map on the interior binding, a gold-inked illustration on the front cover, a wrap-around book cover with the softcover art over that, and is worth the $5 or so extra if you are going to buy volume by volume).
So, a quick review of the specifics of this edition.
Slipcase: The 20th Anniversary Edition includes a print-wrapped slipcase that houses the book neatly without being too snug or too loose. There are two crescent cut-out tabs on either side of the book, for easy removal. The casing boards are sturdy, with no immediate visible warping, though I would not want to test them against any real pressure.
The Book: The covers are nice, sturdy boards, of perhaps slightly heavier stock than the slipcase, again with a print wrap. The spine is completely flat, with the binding ever-so-slightly concave, giving the pages a slight outward bulge in the front (which thankfully does not extend beyond the covers). The pages are lightweight, but nowhere near as thin at the pages that caused the dreaded art bleeding in the B&W one-volume editions. With gorgeous full-color glossy pages, art bleed is now at an absolute minimum. To me, that makes this version the unquestionable go-to edition right there. The book also includes non-glossy endpapers featuring the map of the Valley, and a baby-blue ribbon bookmark, glued to the middle of the binding. And finally, I am happy to report that the book will shut close to flat again after a thorough reading.
The One Negative: Weight. At over six pounds, oh my goodness, is this book heavy. I read the entire thing cover-to-cover in about 11 hours, and my wrists and arms are pretty sore now from holding it. After a while, there's just no comfortable way to support that weight. But that is the trade-off of a one volume edition. If you'd prefer not to deal with it, there are always the 9 individual volumes.
So in short, if you have not already experienced the beauty that is colorized BONE--or BONE at all--don't hesitate. I don't see how it could get better than this.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is a B&W collection of the Bone graphic novels.Read more