Congratulations and accolades are due to Allan Holtz for the publication of his American Newspaper Comics: An Encyclopedic Reference Guide! My copy arrived in the mail yesterday, a wonderful birthday gift from my mother, and I tore into it eagerly.
I don’t think there are too many books about comics that get past me. My comic book collection isn’t made up of polybagged periodicals in longboxes tucked beneath my bed, but are bound books of and about comics, hundreds of them spilling out of my bookshelves. Among them are dozens of volumes which claim to be encyclopedias of one stripe or another, but Holtz’s Encyclopedic Reference stands out among them all. This isn’t a casual browsing encyclopedia for dragging out and randomly perusing; it’s a serious reference work that I look forward to keeping close by as we collect comics here at Barnacle Press. The main body of the book is a listing of strips by title, of course, but there are also listings by Syndicate and Creator and a fantastic, exhaustive list of strip reprints. I haven’t yet dug into the included CD of representative strips, but I’m sure it’ll be a corker.
In creating this book, Holtz has performed a service of singular utility, the rewards of which will be reaped for decades to come. We at Barnacle Press offer our deepest thanks to Allan for his efforts.