Friday, February 20, 2009

The ALA makes my day.

My department head gave me a bunch of new links to help me better serve our patrons. While familiarizing myself with the American Library Association's website, I came across a page that touched me to my geekish core: Comic book based posters to encourage reading. The noise that came out of my mouth sounded something like "SQUEEEEEE!"*

For verily, 'twas a treasure trove for both book lover and comic geek alike: One of Barbara Gordon, librarian and the original Batgirl, in her pre-Oracle days (yes, she's up on her feet) done by Top 10 artist Gene Ha. Also of note is a triptych of DC's "Big Three" - Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman - available as individual posters or as a set by painter Alex Ross**. Neil Gaiman's Sandman is also represented (lovingly rendered by P. Craig Russell).

Marvel's sole contribution comes in the form of the entire X-Men team, plus a couple of villains, trying to read over Wolverine's shoulder (is it really wise to do that to their designated berserker?). Artist John (Planetary) Cassaday is uncredited on the site, but you have me to point these things out. C'mon, Marvel, step up a little here. I mean, OK, nobody's going to buy the idea of the Hulk poring over the works of Marcel Proust, but Spider-Man got ragged on as a "bookworm" all through high school. Surely a little library love from ol' Webhead wouldn't be amiss here?

If you prefer humor to heroics, Patrick McDonnell's Mutts are in the mix, along with the library staff of one of my favorite webcomics, Gene Ambaum's and Bill Barnes' Unshelved.

There's more, of course. Plus a lot of other stuff besides. Go on and check it out.

*- For those of you who got that reference, no, there aren't any Johnny the Homicidal Maniac posters. I agree that it is a shocking and disappointing oversight on the ALA's part.

**- No, not Bob Ross. If you can find a happy little tree in Gotham City, then you've arrived just minutes ahead of a chainsaw-wielding Joker.

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