Masterful Marks: Cartoonists Who Changed the World (Monte Beauchamp) - Simon & Schuster - 2014 - 187 pages

Author Beauchamp had a wonderful idea: tell the story of ground-breaking artists/story-tellers in their own medium.  In this book, he identified 16 "cartoonists" who started new genres and made a difference in the entertainment world.  In addition to the sixteen (with Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster counting as one), readers are treated to another sixteen who illustrated the biographies including great artists Peter Kuper, Drew Friedmann and Arnold Roth.  Kuper's tribute to Mad creator, Harvey Kurtzman is my favorite of the bios.  As great as they were, these cartoonists suffered ad failed, both personally and professionally, before finally achieving greatness and recognition.  Beauchamp's book is a thing of beauty conceived and produced with loving care.  It is sure to become an important reference work for scholars and fans.  [JAM 9/16/2014]