6 January

Publishers Weekly, and probably many other reviewers, have called the series, The Graphic Canon, the event of the year (really two years; the third volume is coming soon) in the realm of comic/ graphic/ sequential literature. Why not the event of the year(s) in publishing in general? Granted, my enthusiasm comes because I had been reading "great books"/ canon-forming studies while not being aware of this project, so it came as a pleasant surprise. Let's consider, though, how remarkable it is. It does not just offer its own list of great works of literature, moreover specifically referring to them as a canon, which many of our "great books" compilers have declined to do. It also offers excerpts from those books--those excerpts being interpretations of the works in a new medium. Having gotten partially through reading the first and second volumes, I'm impressed. I'm not well-read enough in graphic literature to assess the quality of the new, visual parts of the works selected; many of them seem astounding, though, and the variety among the selections leaves me amused just by flipping pages.