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Mr. Twee Deedle: Raggedy Ann's Sprightly Cousin: The Forgotten Fantasy Masterpieces of Johnny Gruelle Hardcover – June 11, 2012

4.7 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Johnny Gruelle was an American artist, magazine cartoonist, and writer of children’s books, best known as the creator of Raggedy Ann and Raggedy Andy. He was born in 1880 and died in 1938.

Rick Marschall, called by Bostonia Magazine “perhaps America’s foremost authority on popular culture,” has written or edited more than 60 books. He co-founded Nemo: The Classic Comics Library and Hogan’s Alley magazines and is President of Rosebud Archives. He has taught comics history at the School of Visual Arts and Rutgers University. His biography of Johann Sebastian Bach will be published by Thomas Nelson in 2010.

Tony Millionaire lives in Pasadena, CA with his wife, the actress Becky Thyre, and their two daughters. He creates the award-winning weekly syndicated comic strip Maakies. His books include Billy Hazelnuts, Billy Hazelnuts and the Crazy Bird, Der Struwwelmaakies, Drinky Crow's Maakies Treasury, Maakies with the Wrinkled Knees, Mighty Mite the Ear Mite, Premillennial Maakies, Little Maakies on the Prairie, The House at Maakies Corner, When We Were Very Maakies, 500 Portraits, and the Sock Monkey series of comics and storybooks.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Fantagraphics; Reprint edition (June 11, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1606994115
  • ISBN-13: 978-1606994115
  • Product Dimensions: 14.4 x 0.9 x 18.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,680,512 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Buying this Johnny Gruelle book was an act of nostalgia. But the book is more than just a reprint of a long out-of-print Gruelle comic strip. The book covers Johnny Gruelles early career and early strips. Most people probably do not know that Gruelles Twee Deedle was a replacement for the very popular Winsor McCay strip Little Nemo. McCay found an oppurtunity to draw Little Nemo for the Hearst papers thus leaving his paper in a lurch. Supposedly a massive hunt and $2000 prize was launched to find a replacement for the Nemo strip. Researchers feel the contest was a put up job to gain advertising for the replacement strip by Gruelle. There were 1500 submissions (supposedly) yet none of these other 1499 submissions were ever heard of again. Makes one wonder. But this does not detrack from the genuis of Gruelle. The Twee Deedle comic strip is, in its own way, as classic as Little Nemo. The colors are bright and the drawing is classic Gruelle. The book is huge, almost as wide and tall as one of todays newspapers so the viewer gets a view very much like his great grandfather would have gotten when he opened the comic section of his newspaper back in 1911. I highly recommend the book. But be aware it is drawn and written (except for the background material) for the very young.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It is amazing to see the fantasy-filled comic strip art of Johnny Gruelle created before his Raggedy Ann days. Not as large, physically, and the Sunday Press FORGOTTEN FANTASIES book, this is nonetheless a beautiful oversized volume filled with beautiful art. The history text provided by comics scholar Rick Marschall with introduction by Tony Millionaire make this gorgeous artistic tour into a legitimate exploration into the history of comics.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I'm a big fan of Johnny Gruelle's Raggedy Ann work, so this book of one of his other strips was a revelation. Everything about it is gorgeous -- artwork, printing, paper and binding. Buy it if you have any fondness for Golden Age comic strip artwork.
The "Like New" copy I bought had a bent corner, but I can't complain for a little over $35.
My only complaint is that the book is so big, it's hard to store!
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Format: Hardcover
There's only one complaint I have about this book and I'll get it out of the way immediately: the full page 1914 strip on page 26 is an insult to the overall excellence of this volume. The difference between this browned, wrinkled, hole-ridden reproduction and the copy of the same strip found on page 113 of Sunday Press's "Forgotten Fantasy" collection is incredible. It's confounding that this page looks so bad, even in the company of a couple other photocopied pages in this book, while the other pages are reproduced with all the care Johnny Gruelle's masterful artwork deserves.

As Rick Marschall writes in his introduction: "Once upon a time, adults savored children's books; likewise, some "grown-up" books were clearly written for children. When well crafted, these books were accessible to both children and adults, neither condescending to youngsters nor tedious for their elders." And Johnny Gruelle brought this enchanted borderland into the Sunday comics supplement of the "New York Herald," answering what might have been the thankless task of replacing Winsor McCay's "Little Nemo in Slumberland." Gruelle succeeded by neither parodying nor copying McCay's classic. Gruelle's strip is a dreamworld where every adventure has a moral, but on the plus side, you don't have to wake up and go to school. The stories and characters are not only accessible to children, the beauty of their delineation, both graphically and verbally, will charm any adult who loves the fantastic.

This volume abounds with samples of Gruelle's other strips and illustrative work.
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By TShane331 on February 18, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Shipped immediately very secured and brand new. This is a computation of Johnny Gruelle's work prior to the creation of the Raggedy Ann & Andy books. He worked and illustrated in numerous newspapers and magazines around the country, it is a large book I was surprised when I received it, 18 inches tall. The book and content are wonderful. I would also recommend this book as well,
Raggedy Ann and Johnny Gruelle: A Bibliography of Published Works
Patricia Hall
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