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Joe Simon: My Life in Comics Hardcover – June 21, 2011

4.8 out of 5 stars 18 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Joe Simon and Jack Kirby created one of the most enduring American heroes in 1940 with Captain America. Simon proved to be a brilliant editor, writer, penciller, inker, and businessman, serving as an editor for Archie, Harvey, Fox, Crestwood, and Mainline Publications —Simon and Kirby’s own company.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Titan Books (June 21, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1845769309
  • ISBN-13: 978-1845769307
  • Product Dimensions: 6.4 x 1 x 9.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #733,878 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By F. Scott Valeri on June 22, 2011
Format: Hardcover
Imagine sitting alone with Joe Simon, the cocreator of Captain America, whose career evolved with the earliest history of comic books and having him tell you the story of his life. Include personal anecdotes about the major companies and personalities of the last 75 years in the comic book industry, all told in an easy conversational style. That's what you have in this entertaining, mesmerizing book. You can't put it down once you start and you don't want the conversation to ever end. Every few pages you have an amazing reveal or insight about the origin of a name or a character or a genre in the development
of the comics industry. By the end of the book Joe Simon becomes a friend and you feel privileged to have heard
such a personal and detailed life story. This is much deeper and richer than any comic book history I have ever read.
Even if you have read Joe's first book, there is so much more included in this new one. The style in which it is written makes it a page turner. I could not recommend it more highly. So quit pondering and 1- click it already!
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Joe Simon is one of the few living treasures still around from the Golden Age of Comics, and this autobiography is a gem as well.

Even if you aren't familiar with the history of comic books, this is an enjoyable read, both entertaining and educational. Joe has a friendly and easy-to-understand writing style, honed from nearly seven decades of writing (and drawing) for comics.

If I have a complaint, it's that Joe sometimes portrays a rosy view of some events that we know were pretty trying for him and his partner. But better to look back on those times with optimism than with bitterness. Good for Joe.

I consider myself pretty much aware of comics history, but I learned several things I hadn't known before.

Thanks to Joe, editor Steve Saffel, and Titan Books for bringing this one to us, along with the beautiful color reprints of Joe and Jack Kirby's stories in the other volumns in this series.

Highly recommended.
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Format: Hardcover
For those who know Joe Simon, his autobiography reads true to form. It is quite a piece of work. I started reading his life story and cruised through experiences he had from Rochester NY to New York City, and the stops in between. The book speaks to the reader with humor and insight. Joe's book is like sitting down with him in his apartment (Joe's Habitat) and allowing him to reminisce about his life, his family and his friends. He tells it like it is with out pulling punches. For those who enjoy the history of comic books, this book is a must. For those who enjoy being entertained, this book is a must. For those who want to learn about a great man's life, this book is a must. For those who just want to know more about a living legend, this book is a must. This book speaks to the reader and allows the reader to follow Joe's life through pictures and illustrations. This book is a much easier read and much more fun than his previous book, The Comic Book Makers.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I read this over a couple of days. To some extent, a lot of it is a recounting of events without too much interpretation but the whole things interesting - especially if you have any like for comic books and the unique era they evolved in. Not to plug another book, but I also just read Al Jaffes autobiography - now that is an amazing albeit sometimes depressing life. Still the events of Jaffes childhood are so amazing and bizarre it's really worth a read. I bring Jaffes up only because Simons life was much more typical - it's not all THAT different from other guys doing comics during that era or, at least, you wouldn't know it from this book. Still, the man IS an icon and incredibly important to the industry. Also seems to be a very nice guy and it's a pleasant read so I highly recommend it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In Joe Simon we have a rare and unique resource:

There at the inception of the medium
Involved in every aspect of the medium; artist, writer, editor, publisher, entrepreneur.
Worked with and for the most important companies and personalities in the history of the medium.
Longevity
Great recall

As opposed to other professionals who have written books in the medium, the points outlined above provide Joe with the broadest of perspectives. This spares us the all bias's inherent in virtually every other history of the medium making this a must read.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Joe Simon has always been an unsung hero to me. His prime in the comic book industry happened before the Silver Age, so he is largely forgotten by most modern fans, but his contributions to style, both editorially and artistically, cannot be understated.

But this book is great because it's not just about Mr. Simon. It is about many of the gone (and often forgotten) giants that formed the foundation of the comic book culture we enjoy today. It's about the way they lived, created, and prospered, as well as how they struggled. But the story remains light and funny throughout.

Highly HIGHLY recommended!
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Format: Hardcover
There is a somewhat widely held theory that anyone in comics who is `someone', or has accomplished anything of note has the initials J.S. Jim Steranko, Joe Sinnot, Joe Staton, and Joe Simon come to mind. It is currently my theory that anyone who reads "My Life in Comics, Joe Simon" will agree with that hypothesis.
Few individuals are alive today who contributed to the beginning of the American comic book industry, and even fewer are alive who made such a contribution that they are still held in awe. Joe Simon, if we were to list his significant works, would probably blush. So, we will indeed list some of his notables:
Captain America and Bucky
Newsboy Legion
Fighting American
3-D Comics
Boys Town
Romance Comics
Challengers of the Unknown
Silver Spider
Sick Magazine
Black Magic
The Prez
Stuntman
Okay, get the point? In addition to being prolific, he really could do it all. From his early training in newspapers, he learned paste up, production, art touch up, writing, photography, promotion, printing, sales, and contract law. I probably forgot to mention lettering, and coloring too. He, in addition to his comic book work, served industry in advertising, layout, painting, and even produced work during his army stint.
His cohorts in artistic endeavors included: Jack Kirby, Bob Powell, George Tuska, Steve Ditko, Jim Steranko, Carl Burgos, Bill Everett, Mort Meskin, Jack Davis, and many others.
If any man is THE source for the real history of comic books, Mr Simon is it. At 98, he still remembers. At 98, he still can draw. At 98, he still goes to comic conventions. He, is truly a living legend, just like his creation a la crème, Captain America.
The book covers his career from the early 1930's to 2010.
Read more ›
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