The Comics Journal: “A Book Worth Taking Time Over”

Ben Franklin--Fart Proudly

Panels from Benjamin Franklin’s Fart Proudly, adapted by Stan Shaw

Kristian Williams reviewed Volume 1 of The Graphic Canon for the legendary news and reviews publication The Comics Journal:

If you took a Norton Anthology of Literature and converted it into comics, the result would be something like The Graphic Canon.

Russ Kick has collected graphic adaptations of 56 classics of world literature, beginning with Gilgamesh and ending with Dangerous Liaisons….[I]t is really the art that makes this book worth having. With artists as prominent and diverse as Rick Geary (The Book of Revelation), Roberta Gregory (Popol Vuh), Will Eisner (Don Quixote), Peter Kuper (“A Modest Proposal”), and Robert Crumb (Boswell’s London Journal), the styles cover a spectrum from simple iconography, to grotesque caricature, to hyper-realism, to broad impressionistic washes of color.

The result is a long collection, dense with both text and imagery. It takes time to read this book, but it is a book worth taking time over. Reading one, or sometimes two, chapters in an evening, I enjoyed the careful pace of the work, as I let my eyes take in the page, slowly absorbing the meaning of the art, and then the words, and then, as often as not, considering the art again.

Click HERE to read the full review on The Comics Journal!

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