$39.95

Signed extra-illustrated full color 7×10 bookplate! Now in softcover. Our Highest Recommendation. By Roger Hill. The special bookplate features a painting never before reproduced in full color featuring John Carter, Dejah Thoris & friends, and Tars Tarkas going into battle (nudity). From the 1940s to the ’70s, Reed Crandall brought a unique and masterful style to American comic art. Using an illustrator’s approach on everything he touched, Crandall gained a reputation as the “artist’s artist” through his skillful interpretations of Golden Age super-heroes Doll Man, The Ray, Firebrand, and Blackhawk (his signature character); horror and sci-fi for the legendary EC Comics line; Warren Publishing’s Creepy, Eerie, and Blazing Combat; THUNDER Agents and Edgar Rice Burroughs characters; and even Flash Gordon for King Features. TwoMorrows, 2021.

 

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The special bookplate features a painting never before reproduced in full color featuring John Carter, Dejah Thoris & friends, and Tars Tarkas going into battle (nudity). From the 1940s to the ’70s, Reed Crandall brought a unique and masterful style to American comic art. Using an illustrator’s approach on everything he touched, Crandall gained a reputation as the “artist’s artist” through his skillful interpretations of Golden Age super-heroes Doll Man, The Ray, Firebrand, and Blackhawk (his signature character); horror and sci-fi for the legendary EC Comics line; Warren Publishing’s Creepy, Eerie, and Blazing Combat; THUNDER Agents and Edgar Rice Burroughs characters; and even Flash Gordon for King Features.

Comic art historian Roger Hill (publisher of the highly recommended EC Fan-Addict) has compiled a complete and extensive history of Crandall’s life and career, from his early years and major successes, through his tragic decline and passing in 1982. This full-color hardcover includes never-before-seen photos, a wealth of rare and unpublished artwork, and over eighty thousand words of insight into one of the true illustrators of the comics.

This has been a long, long-term project of Roger’s and it shows. Roger doesn’t do anything second class. I’m still only about a third of the way through it, and I’ve already learned a ton of new detail about Crandall’s life and work. AND…it’s simply packed with great artwork: reproductions of original art, comic covers, special panels, wonderful splash pages, and even several never before seen paintings and drawings.

Over and over again, fellow artists talk about Crandall being THE guy; the best artist they knew, as well as being Quality Comics’ #1 guy. He got the best strips. He took over when Lou Fine wasn’t fast enough. He did the classic covers that today are so collectible. He could draw anything, having been raised on a farm with all kinds of animals. And also having a photographic memory, he never had to use reference material. His inking was lush and polished. His anatomy was second to none, rivaling that of Lou Fine and perhaps surpassing him.

The hardcover edition of this sold out within just weeks of publication, leaving many with no way to obtain a copy. This new softcover printing is identical apart from a few small corrections and color adjustments.

We’ve added our own special bookplate to this, reproducing an original full color (almost but not quite finished) illustration that Reed planned to give to his friend Al Williamson. It’s an elaborate piece, which you can see here — the unfinished aspect is no serious detriment. Reed just didn’t finish the background, which features attacking Black Pirates of Barsoom descending from their airship.

I bought this from Jerry Weist in 1970 and it is one of my prized possessions. It was only ever reproduced before, in black and white, in an issue of OAF, an obscure fanzine in 1970. We made this bookplate extra large to really show this off, and I’m really pleased with how nice it looks.  -Bud

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