The first volume in the bestselling archival series collecting the most beloved comic strip ever. Many of these formative strips have never been collected or reprinted anywhere else. Introduction by Garrison Keillor.
This first volume, covering the first two and a quarter years of the strip, will be of particular fascination to Peanuts aficionados worldwide: Although there have been literally hundreds of Peanuts books published, many of the strips from the series' first two or three years have never been collected before—in large part because they showed a young Schulz working out the kinks in his new strip and include some characterizations and designs that are quite different from the cast we're all familiar with. (Among other things, three major cast members—Schroeder, Lucy, and Linus—initially show up as infants and only "grow" into their final "mature" selves as the months go by. Even Snoopy debuts as a puppy!) Thus The Complete Peanuts offers a unique chance to see a master of the art form refine his skills and solidify his universe, day by day, week by week, month by month.
This volume is rounded out with Garrison Keillor's introduction, a biographical essay by David Michaelis (Schulz and Peanuts) and an in-depth interview with Schulz conducted in 1987 by Gary Groth and Rick Marschall, all wrapped in a gorgeous design by award-winning cartoonist Seth.
About the Author
Charles M. Schulz was born November 25, 1922, in Minneapolis. His destiny was foreshadowed when an uncle gave him, at the age of two days, the nickname Sparky (after the racehorse Spark Plug in the newspaper strip Barney Google). His ambition from a young age was to be a cartoonist and his first success was selling 17 cartoons to the Saturday Evening Post between 1948 and 1950. He also sold a weekly comic feature called Li'l Folks to the local St. Paul Pioneer Press. After writing and drawing the feature for two years, Schulz asked for a better location in the paper or for daily exposure, as well as a raise. When he was turned down on all three counts, he quit.
He started submitting strips to the newspaper syndicates and in the spring of 1950, United Feature Syndicate expressed interest in Li'l Folks. They bought the strip, renaming it Peanuts, a title Schulz always loathed. The first Peanuts daily appeared October 2, 1950; the first Sunday, January 6, 1952. Diagnosed with cancer, Schulz retired from Peanuts at the end of 1999. He died on February 13, 2000, the day before Valentine's Day-and the day before his last strip was published, having completed 17,897 daily and Sunday strips, each and every one fully written, drawn, and lettered entirely by his own hand — an unmatched achievement in comics.
Garrison Keillor has hosted the comedy/variety radio show A Prairie Home Companion since 1974. His many books include Lake Wobegon Days, Leaving Home, Happy to Be Here, The Book of Guys, Homegrown Democrat, Lake Wobegon Summer 1956, Love Me, Wobegon Boy, Pontoon, Liberty, and Pilgrims. Audio CDs and cassettes of compilations of A Prairie Home Companion and Keillor's readings of his books have sold in the millions. He wrote the script for and starred in the 2006 motion picture A Prairie Home Companion, the final film directed by Robert Altman.
A milestone, and a long overdue one at that. — Philadelphia City Paper
Starred Review: A treat. — Publishers Weekly
An extraordinary publishing project. — Time
Consider replacing those tattered old Peanuts paperbacks with this definitive series. — Booklist
Now that Schulz is gone, the comic he drew for 50 years looks more eccentric and ingenious all the time. — Washington Post