Thursday, July 02, 2009

Looking for Calvin and Hobbes - Sample Chapter

Local author Nevin Martell has written a new book, an appreciation of Bill Watterson's comic strip, entitled "Looking for Calvin and Hobbes." I've read the first chapter, about Nevin's motivations, and enjoyed it. The book will be out soon, and Nevin has an offer for you:

Just thought I'd send you a potential news item for your blog, which I've become a dedicated follower of since stumbling across it over a year ago. 

To drum up interest in Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and his Revolutionary Comic Strip, I am offering interested readers a sample chapter from the book, which comes out on October 1 via Continuum Press. Send an email to to request your very own free copy. Give me their email address (I promise I won't sell it or spam it incessantly) and I'll give you some quality summertime beach reading.

Here's a brief overview of the book:

For ten years, between 1985 and 1995, Calvin and Hobbes was one the world's most beloved comic strips. And then, on the last day of 1995, the strip ended. Its mercurial and reclusive creator, Bill Watterson, not only finished the strip but withdrew entirely from public life. There is no merchandising associated with Calvin and Hobbes: no movie franchise; no plush toys; no coffee mugs; no t-shirts (except a handful of illegal ones). There is only the strip itself, and the books in which it has been compiled - including The Complete Calvin and Hobbes: the heaviest book ever to hit the New York Times bestseller list.

In Looking for Calvin and Hobbes: The Unconventional Story of Bill Watterson and His Revolutionary Comic Strip, writer Nevin Martell traces the life and career of the extraordinary, influential, and intensely private man behind Calvin and Hobbes. With input from a wide range of artists and writers (including Dave Barry, Harvey Pekar, Jonathan Lethem, and Brad Bird) as well as some of Watterson's closest friends and professional colleagues, this is as close as we're ever likely to get to one of America's most ingenious and intriguing figures - and a fascinating detective story, at the same time.

Only 3,160 Calvin and Hobbes strips were ever produced, but Watterson has left behind an impressive legacy. Calvin and Hobbes references litter the pop culture landscape and his fans are as varied as they are numerable. Looking for Calvin and Hobbes is an affectionate and revealing book about uncovering the story behind this most uncommon trio – a man, a boy, and his tiger.

I interviewed almost 50 cartoonists for the project, including Berke Breathed (Bloom County/Opus/Outland), Jim Davis (Garfield), Lynn Johnston (For Better or For Worse), Nicholas Gurewitch (The Perry Bible Fellowship), Keith Knight (The Knight Life/K Chronicles), Bill Amend (Foxtrot), Mort Walker (Beetle Bailey), Stephan Pastis (Pearls Before Swine), Michael Jantze (The Norm), Mark Parisi (Off The Mark), Hilary Price (Rhymes With Orange), Dave Coverly (Speed Bump), Jan Eliot (Stone Soup), Jeff Smith (Bone), Brad Anderson (Marmaduke), Jef Mallett (Frazz), Mike Peters (Mother Goose & Grimm), Steve Troop (Mayberry Melonpool), Craig Thompson (Blankets), Pulitzer Prize winning editorial cartoonist Patrick Oliphant, Jim Borgman (Zits), Mark Tatulli (Lio) and Jim Meddick (Monty).  

The book can be pre-ordered at by following this link:

Readers can also follow me on Twitter at:

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