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Hardcover Books

What Are YOU Doing This Weekend?

If you grew up between the 1960’s and the 1990’s, we know where you were on Saturday mornings: Seated right in front of the television, catching up with your favorite animated and fantasy TV series. Now four whole decades of weekend TV pleasures are chronicled in It’s Saturday Morning! A Look Back at Four Decades of Animation, Pop Culture, and Tradition (whew!). It’s a new hardcover book written by Joe Garner and Michael Ashley. “With concept art, archival images, all-new interviews, and a foreword by Bobby’s World creator and funnyman Howie Mandel, It’s Saturday Morning! celebrates the shows, characters, songs, and commercials that made Saturday mornings a pop culture event—decade by decade… Broadcasting into family living rooms from the 1960’s to the 1990’s, this wildly creative art form wrought a beloved rite of passage. From the hours of 8 a.m. to 12 p.m., parents could sleep in while their children plopped on the couch to consume cartoons galore. From The Bugs Bunny Show, The Jetsons, and Jonny Quest to The Smurfs, He-Man, and Animaniacs, this window of time promised pure entertainment and an experience that united generations… This entertaining walk down memory lane is made complete by a review of some of the iconic products advertised between these favorite cartoons. ‘After These Messages…’ segments provide fascinating facts about the merchandise that appeared in Saturday morning commercials, such as the Slinky, Lite-Brite, Cabbage Patch Kids, and Golden Crisp cereal.” Yum! Needless to say there are lots of furry-themed shows discussed in these pages. It’s Saturday Morning! is available now from Becker & Meyer.

image c. 2018 Becker & Meyer

Don’t Let the Cat-Fish Bite

And found at a local bookstore: Snazzy Cat Capers, a new adventure novel series for middle-school readers written by Deanna Kent. “Life is short. Diamonds are fur-ever. Internationally famous cat burglar Ophelia von Hairball V adores jewels. The only thing she loves more is a challenge. She’s never met a safe she couldn’t crack. Now the Furry Feline Burglary Institute (FFBI) offers her the ultimate caper: Steal the giant Himalayan diamond and win their top award! There’s a catch! The FFBI sends an enthusiastic inventor to help Ophelia… but this cat works alone, and Oscar Fishgerald Gold smells fishy. Can the smartest, stealthiest, and snazziest of cats learn to work with a fintastic sidekick and prove she’s still the world’s most purr-fect burglar?” Check out the offical SCC web site for more, including a preview of the 2nd book, The Fast and the Furriest.

image c. 2018 Imprint

Jingle Egg Shells, Jingle Egg Shells…

A perfect seasonal item, now on the bookshelves: It’s The Christmasaurus, a new novel for young readers written by singer/songwriter and YouTube celebrity Tom Fletcher. “Once upon a time–long, long ago, when dinosaurs roamed the Earth–an egg rolled away from its mother and landed in the ocean, where it froze solid and stayed peacefully for thousands of years. Then one day Santa and his elves discover the frozen egg, and Santa sits on it to see if it will hatch. But he can’t guess what’s inside. . .  a dinosaur! Meanwhile, a young boy named William Trundle has only ever wished for one thing for Christmas: A dinosaur! So when Santa accidentally gives William the real Christmasaurus instead of a stuffed replica, it’s the Best Christmas Ever! Until an evil man known as the Hunter decides a dinosaur will be the perfect addition to his collection…” With illustrations by Shane Devries, The Christmasaurus is available now in hardcover from Penguin Books/Random House.

image c. 2018 Penguin Books

Feline Foundations

New from First Second: “All Marmalade wants to do is build things. She is, after all, a trained architect. She’s also a distractingly adorable kitten. Fed up with not being taken seriously because she’s so cute, Marmalade bands together with a handful of other aspiring builders—all of them kittens. But in a world where humans call the shots, can the Kitten Construction Company prove their worth… without giving up the very things that make them kittens?” Meet The House Kittens is the first volume of the Kitten Construction Company, a new full-color graphic novel series for young readers written and illustrated by John Patrick Green (creator of Hippopotamister, which we’ve talked about before). It’s out now in hardcover, distributed by Macmillan & Company.

image c. 2018 First Second

He’s Unda Da Sea

Paptercutz brings us a new full-color mini-comic series for young readers: Gillbert the Little Merman, Volume 1 by Art Baltazar (writer and illustrator of Tiny Titans and Captain Action Cat). Here’s the preview over at their web site: “In the deepest part of the ocean, unexplored by man and too deep for humans to swim, lives a little sea creature named Gillbert. Gillbert the Sea Creature is the son of King Nauticus, king of all the oceans. One day, Gillbert will be king. But in the meantime, his playful curiosity takes him away from the kingdom on a journey of discovery.Gillbert meets an amphibious mermaid and follows her into unknown parts of the ocean. Where he meets many unknown and undiscovered species of underwater creatures. He didn’t know these things existed so close to home. Gillbert’s world just got a whole lot bigger!” It’s available at comic book stores in paperback and hardcover editions.

image c. 2018 Papercutz

The Power of the Sea — To Hurt and To Heal

Katie O’Neill is well-known among comic collectors as the creator of Princess Princess Ever After and The Tea Dragon Society. Now comes her latest work, Aquicorn Cove, out now from Oni Press. “When Lana and her father return to their seaside hometown to help clear the debris of a big storm, Lana remembers how much she’s missed the ocean—and the strong, reassuring presence of her aunt. As Lana explores the familiar beach, she discovers something incredible: a colony of Aquicorns, small magical seahorse-like creatures that live in the coral reef. Lana rescues an injured Aquicorn and cares for it with the help of her aunt, who may know more about these strange creatures than she’s willing to admit. But when a second storm threatens to reach the town, choices made many years ago about how to coexist with the sea start to rise to the surface.” This full-color graphic novel is available now in hardcover.

image c. 2018 Oni Press

It’s Not Fair Penguins Can’t Fly

An unusual new graphic novel from Fantagraphics Books: Penguins by Nick Thorburn. “Told almost entirely without words, Penguins is one of the most playfully original graphic novels in recent memory… relying on visual expression and the physical movement of his penguin characters, as well as the formal properties of sequential drawings (with penguins routinely moving within and without each page’s panel borders), Penguins is a series of interconnected short strips that, without words or human characters, does more to showcase the breadth of emotion we as humans experience than most prose novels.” It’s available now in hardcover from Amazon.

image c. 2018 Fantagraphics Books

I Want a Monster to Be My Playmate

Monster Mayhem is a new full-color graphic novel written and illustrated by Christopher Eliopoulos.Zoe’s favorite thing to do—besides invent and build robots — is watch classic monster movies. She has never been comfortable with kids her own age, and so she pretends she doesn’t need friends while inside she’s longing for connection. And then one day, Zoe finds a mysterious ring on her way home from school. She puts it on, gives it a twist, and — FRZAAKK! There’s a massive burst of light! The next morning, a familiar monster appears at Zoe’s window. He’s from one of her favorite kaiju movies, and he likes Zoe — he wants to be her friend. Has her secret wish been fulfilled? But it turns out that Zoe’s ring has brought more than just this friendly monster to life. More monsters have arrived, and they are hungry! Now she’ll need to reach out to other people to help her save her town from destruction. Good thing she’s a robotics genius!” Got all that? It’s available now in hardcover from Dial Books.

image c. 2018 Dial Books

 

Disney Had Help

A well-known (among fans) but under-discussed pioneer of animation gets more of his due in the new book Walt Disney’s Ultimate Inventor: The Genius of Ub Iwerks. It’s written by Don Iwerks (Ub’s son!), with an introduction by Leonard Maltin. “Beginning with the creation of the Mickey Mouse cartoons, the Walt Disney Studio established an early reputation as being a technical leader in Hollywood. But Walt Disney didn’t do it alone. He frequently relied on the counsel, expertise, ingenuity, and creativity of a kindred spirit, lifelong friend, and fellow virtuoso: Ub Iwerks. Yet Ub and his many technical inventions and techniques are largely unknown by the general public. His illustrious career consisted of dozens of innovative contributions, large and small, to both animated and live-action motion pictures, as well as the fields of optics, film processes, and special effects. He was also the major force behind the design of special cameras, projectors, electronics, and audio for theme park projects-and much more. The high standard set by Walt and Ub continues to inspire artists and technicians within The Walt Disney Company as they explore new avenues of quality entertainment.” In hardcover from Disney Editions, it’s out of print right now but should be available again before the holidays.

image c. 2018 Walt Disney Animation