Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Praise for Harvey Pekar: Conversations

Harvey Pekar: Conversations, edited by Michael Rhode, offers almost twenty-five years of interviews from a variety of sources including small fanzines, local public radio shows, and the Washington Post. It was recently featured in Booklist.

From the October 1 Issue of ALA Booklist:

Pekar has parlayed his pioneering autobiographical comic American Splendor, which he has produced for more than three decades, into minor celebrity, first through appearances on David Letterman’s show and then in the 2003 film American Splendor. He has been interviewed in the mainstream press (especially after the film’s release) and comics fanzines often enough to allow Rhode to corral 21 pieces in this book.

They range from a short interview in the comics magazine Heavy Metal from 1984, eight years after Splendor was launched and two before his first Letterman gig, to recent colloquies conducted at comics conventions and chats with comics websites. Since Pekar’s life has been thoroughly mined for Splendor, the interviews tend to focus on his work and his frequently iconoclastic views. His humorously irascible personality, familiar to fans of the comics and the movie, comes through in the interviews, although the discussions, especially the more in-depth conversations from the comics press, reveal a more thoughtful, rounded character than the cantankerous persona he deliberately emphasizes in Splendor.

— Gordon Flagg

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