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Barnaby!
Bar Harbor
alexx_kay
Fantagraphics Books is, at long last, giving Crockett Johnson's delightful comic strip "Barnaby" a full reprint. The first volume is out, and anyone who likes to laugh should buy a copy!

It's not 100% perfect, but it's *miles* better than the previous reprint from the 80s, and that one never completed. I exhort y'all to buy this version, at least partially out of selfishness, because I want this reprinting to be successful enough to conclude.

"Barnaby" ran from 1942 to 1952. It tells the adventures of a small boy who wishes for a fairy godmother, and gets something rather different. A short, round man in an overcoat, pink wings, and smoking a cigar appears: J.J. O'Malley, alleged fairy godfather. He does seem to have magic powers, but not much understanding of or control over them. He's basically a con man in the W.C. Fields style, always on the lookout for a free meal or a get-rich-quick scheme. Barnaby's parents never manage to be in the same room as him, so they think he's imaginary, and worry about Barnaby's overactive imagination. (Yes, this strip was a big influence on Calvin & Hobbes.)

In his own day, Barnaby numbered Dorothy Parker and Duke Ellington among his fans. I highly recommend that you join them!
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I might have my father's original set. Cushlamacree!

Doubling the recommendation!
I still have vol. 1 of my mom's original hardbound Barnaby, plus a couple of the 80s reprints.

Woohoo! I had to nick my mom's copy last time to read it...


I've got an old Dover trade paperback my library program tells me is from 1967--I assume that's the same as the 1980s reprint? I love Barnaby!!

No, that would not be the same. The 80s version was standard paperback size (which was really rather too small). It might be a reprint of one or both of the 40s collections, or it might have been its own thing.

This is a *big* trade paperback--maybe 9 x 11? Easy to read. My Dad picked it up for me because he loved Barnaby .

Okay, you got me curious -- I've just picked it up. (And gotten onto Kate's Amazon Prime, because they wanted to charge OMG $13 for shipping.)

Looking forward to it -- thanks for the recommendation!

$13?! It is admittedly a somewhat unusual shape, but it's not like it's *that* huge.

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