Well, 2004 is over, and what a year it was for the Peanuts book fan! Between the first two volumes of The Complete Peanuts, the Schulz Museum’s Li’l Folks collection, and It’s Only A Game, there was a tremendous amount of vital Schulz material hitting your bookshelf for the first time! The new year will bring us a couple more volumes of The Complete Peanuts, of course, so there is still much to look forward to.
I just realized that back in July, I promised a review of the Robbie Reader biography of Schulz, and never delivered. This is yet another volume aimed at school libraries. Author Barbara Marvis (a writer who specializes in “non-fiction for middle-grade at-risk readers”) did go a bit more in-depth than some of the other bios, but it’s still very much a grade school book and won’t be of much interest to anyone beyond that. Still, she got her facts reasonably in order, putting her above some of the other authors. The book has roughly a thousand words, plus about a dozen large photos, a timeline, a brief index, a glossary with half a dozen terms, a selected biography, and a list of other works to turn to in order to find out more — three books, all of which are also school library bios, and some of which are much less informative than even this brief book. This one doesn’t set the bar too high, but it reaches its goals, I suppose.
But hey, I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t find some little aggrevation to pick apart, so here I am at my picayune best: the book constantly mispunctuates Li’l. We get references to L’il Folks and L’il Abner. Grrrr. It bothers me when they don’t bother getting the li’l things right.
And speaking of Schulz bios for kids, the First Biographies one is now shipping. Needless to say, there is a copy zooming its way to AAUGH.com headquarters, and a review (and possibly some small snide comments) is forthcoming.