Bone Handbook

by Jeff Smith, Scholastic Books, 2010

~ this book qualifies for the Once Upon A Time Challenge ~

I like Jeff Smith’s simple cartoony style in this series of books, all of which I read as the original B&W collections were published. Since that time they have been colored and republished, but I’m not buying the same thing again. I spotted this “handbook” at the store and bought it expecting a reference type book of background, character details and perhaps some new information.

I got a little of that, unfortunately wrapped in a written-for-kids style. [Fun fact! Did you know the creature was named after the artists’ dog? They’re both brown!] That sort of thing, thought hat’s not a quote. So for $10 there wasn’t much here, but I will warn you that if you haven’t read the Bone series of books, reading this beforehand will give you a good overview of the large story arc, and a lot of spoilers. In this case one goes with the other, I suppose.

I recommend the Bone Books, this handbook is very optional.

About Rick Robinson

Enjoying life in Portland, OR
This entry was posted in book challenge, Personal Opinion, reading, Review. Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Bone Handbook

  1. Bill Crider says:

    I prefer the B&W version, myself.

  2. Richard says:

    If I’d not already had the black and white, I probably would have gotten the colored one, because I like the job Steve Hamaker did with the color. But I’m not about to buy two sets of the same thing.

  3. Jeff S. says:

    I’m hoping one day for a giant colored one volum edition myself.

    If you really enjoy Bone I would suggest checking out a recent DVD that came out about Jeff Smith called The Cartoonist. I bought a month or two back. Carl and I both watched it one evening and Ireally enjoyed it and I believe he did as well.

    Bone is a fun story that I need to reread one of these days. I also need to check out Jeff Smith’s recent work RASL. I haven’t picked up any of it yet.

  4. Carl V. says:

    I second Jeff’s recommendation of the DVD. Very, very good! I too really enjoy Smith’s style. I like how he juxtaposes the very cartoony style of the Bone characters with a slightly more detailed style for the other characters. I find his work very unique in this respect and great to look at and read.

  5. Richard says:

    I have seen the ads for the DVD, but at $20 it’s not a high priority. I doubt the library will get it. Rats. Smith’s artwork has always reminded me a little of Walt Kelly, and he says Kelly, who drew and wrote POGO was a big influence. I love Pogo.

  6. Jeff S. says:

    Richard – Your might see if you can get a copy of the DVD through the Interlibrary loan system through your library. I have done this a number of times to get rare or expensive books that my local library doesn’t stock but my wife and/or I want to read. Just a thought.

  7. Richard says:

    Good thought, Jeff, I’ll give them a call. I’ve gotten other things via interloan.

  8. Jeff S. says:

    Carl lent me the Bone Handbook you sent him and I read it. Not really much meat to it. Good for kids but lacking for adults in my opinion.

  9. Richard says:

    Jeff S. – I agree with that. I bought it on sight and when I looked at it later, after telling Carl his was on the way, I realized it’s more of a “hey, kids! Look at this!” kind of thing. It does summarize things somewhat and have a characters list, but it’s not something I’d have bought had I looked at it more carefully. An impulse buy mistake.

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