During my Beaglefest talk, I mentioned that there are two kinds of Schulz books that I love as a blogger. There are the wonderful books that I can wholeheartedly recommend that people buy, and there are the terrible ones that I can have fun being snarky about. Many of the examples that I showed of the latter were of biographies about Schulz aimed at kids.
Which is why the book Charles Schulz by Gloria D, Miklowitz, part of the Dominie Biography Series, is such a disappointment. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not an inspiring book. It is, after all, one of a mass-produced line of biographies meant to fill the shelves at school libraries. But it’s perfectly adequate, a 1,642 word biography that doesn’t misspell Schulz’s name, doesn’t combine his two sequential wives into one giant superwife, and doesn’t have hideous illustrations. It’s not up to the quality of, say, the some-what-older-targeted Sparky, and there are a few minor factual nitpicks I can call against it (Snoopy, while part of the original cast, was not in the first strip; nor was he originally a young beagle), but all in all, if my daughter brought this home in order to write a book report about it, I would not recoil in horror. (I might wish she had a book that was more inherently creative to write a report on, but that’s my own bookish snobbishness at work.)
This book was published about a decade ago, and has been available as single paperback copies or in a convenient hardcover six-pack! (Some poor fool who thought he was ordering a six-pack of Schlitz is going to end up very disappointed.)