The inspiration for the award-winning movie
from HBO Films and Fine Line Features
The Life and Times of Harvey Pekar
Two classic comic anthologies in one volume
Stories by Harvey Pekar
Introduction by R. Crumb
Art by Kevin Brown, Gregory Budgett, Sean Carroll, Sue Cavey, R. Crumb, Gary Dumm, Val Mayerik, and Gerry Shamray
The classic collection of the comics that inspired the movie American Splendor, winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival
American Splendor is the world’s first literary comic book. Cleveland native Harvey Pekar is a true American original. A V.A. hospital file clerk and comic book writer, Harvey chronicles the ordinary and mundane in stories both funny and touching. His dead-on eye for the frustrations and minutiae of the workaday world mix in a delicate balance with his insight into personal relationships. Pekar has been compared to Dreiser, Dostoevsky, and Lenny Bruce. But he is truly more than all of them—he is himself.
“Mr. Pekar has . . . proven that comics can address the ambiguities of daily living, that like the finest fiction, they can hold a mirror up to life.”
—The New York Times
“[Pekar] has a vision that makes daily city life—a ride on the bus, a run-in with a boss, or simply buying bread—dramatic.”
“Simply stated, American Splendor is the most superb literary endeavor to come off the streets of Cleveland in decades.”
—The Plain Dealer (Cleveland)
“Mr. Pekar lets all of life flood into his panels: the humdrum and the heroic, the gritty and the grand.”
—The New York Times Book Review
About the Author
Harvey Pekar (1939-2010) was a comic book writer and author of the autobiographical American Splendor series, which was adapted into an Academy Award nominated film. Pekar was also a prolific jazz and book critic.
Born in Philadelphia, R. Crumb is the author of numerous comic works and one of the pioneers of underground comics. His books include Kafka, The Complete Crumb Comics (17 volumes), The R. Crumb Sketchbook (10 volumes), R. Crumb Draws the Blues, The Book of Mr. Natural, The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb, and many more. He lives in the south of France with his wife, the artist Aline Kominsky-Crumb.