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ALEC: The Years Have Pants (A Life-Size Omnibus) - Hardcover Edition Hardcover – Jan 18 2010

4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 640 pages
  • Publisher: Top Shelf Productions (Jan. 18 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1603090479
  • ISBN-13: 978-1603090476
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 5.3 x 26.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 2.1 Kg
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #731,969 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Eddie Campbell excels when writing short stories, so the After the Snooter chapter still is the best for me. Beside The History of Humor, which is neither funny nor very informative, it's overall an excellent book at an excellent price.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0xa47f49f0) out of 5 stars 9 reviews
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4556c9c) out of 5 stars A Life, Honestly April 14 2015
By D. Scott - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
I am a big fan of autobiographical graphic novels. I think they appeal to me because of the way they can personalize an experience with the truth of a diary or journal while still allowing the author to stylize the narrative to present multiple layers of meaning and impression. Excellent examples of this genera include works by Chester Brown, James Kochalka (the “American Elf” series), Derf (“Punk Rock and Trailer Parks” and “My Friend Dahmer”), Harvey Pekar (“American Splendor”), Guy Delisle (“Shenzhen,” “Burma Chronicles,” “Pyongyang” and “Jerusalem”), and Jeffrey Brown. Now I can Eddie Campbell and his terrific “Alec – ‘The Years Have Pants’” to this treasured list.

In “Alec,” Eddie Campbell compiles decades of his autobiographical works in one volume, from his young bachelor days as a Scottish member of the wild King Canute bar crowd in Great Britain, where he scrapes out a meager existence in a manual labor metalworking job. He dates, hones his artistic craft, and begins a journey of self-discovery. We follow him through marriage, children, and the world of self-publishing to see him emerge a mature family man and reasonably-famous artist based in Australia. We even get behind the scenes stories of Alan Moore, Neil Gaiman, and other famous writers and artists he comes in contact with. Through it all Eddie Campbell, through his alter ego Alec MacGarry, shares with us the ups and downs, through good drawings and hurried, the real and the surreal. Most of all, however, we share with him the honesty of life that he unfailingly paints on each page. There is very little self-importance here. We get the randomness and seeming irrelevance of the day-to-day through the colorful yet very real characters that flow through Alec’s life.

I have the hard bound edition from Top Shelf and it is wonderful. The spare, no-nonsense artwork on the cover and spine goes perfectly in tone with the gorgeous black and white drawings inside. The paper is heavy and displays the ink well. We even get bonus material in the back of the book. The whole project is well-realized, done in the right way, and I am glad to display it in my home. Highly recommended.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4556e7c) out of 5 stars A Revelation of Humanity June 21 2010
By GraphicNovelReporter.com - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Taking its cue from The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock--"I grow old, I wear the bottom of my trousers rolled"--Alec: "The Years Have Pants" knows we change our pants from time to time, and how we do so details how we make our way through life. It's also the title of the new story that ends this massive compendium collecting Eddie Campbell's (almost complete) catalog of biographical comics works.

Campbell first began drawing his autobiographical comics back in the `70s. To protect the identity of his friends and family, he gave everyone a different name--including himself ("Alec MacGarry"). Alec has stood in for Eddie even since, as Campbell has continued through multiple publishers and multiple venues of his life. All of them (except for The Fate of the Artist, which is still in print from First Second) are found in Alec: "The Years Have Pants".

Today, it's a matter of course to see a comic biography. Comics memoirs are almost a dime a dozen, it seems. But that shouldn't negate the pure joy of experiencing a true master of the form explore the full range of its possibilities, from the mundane to the extraordinary. It's interesting to watch an intelligent, well-thought-out man delve into the ups and downs of his own life with care.

Campbell is a comics veteran, so he peppers his tales with stories of the growth of the industry itself (the mid-`80s burst that sees Alan Moore, Art Spiegelman, and others exploding with greatness coincides with the birth of Alec's first child, a nice parallel that Campbell doesn't miss out on).

The bottom line is this: If you want to see what a master of comics memoir does at the top of his form, Alec: "The Years Have Pants" is the book to read. Its 600 pages are a revelation of humanity.

-- John Hogan
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa454e0a8) out of 5 stars Alec: The Years Have Pants (A Work of Staggering Genius) April 14 2010
By Michael Evans - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Campbell's finest piece of work is himself. The Alec project which he has been pursuing for three decades is nothing less than the distillation of a life into a work of art. Not just the amazing events or encounters with the luminaries of his world, Campbell has delineated the true glories of a life in all of its glorious mess, a domestic fugue punctuated by bright notes of celebrities drawn into his composition. Never dazzled by another's brilliance but always admiring, he has composed an appreciation of those who have influenced him, those he admires amongst his contemporaries, and the people he loves just because they're there is his world. This is a work utterly bereft of pretension. It is a work of the most utter honesty, an honesty so keenly felt that you feel elated with the author in his joys and wretched when he is miserable. Lyrical, anarchic, beautiful: this is a book that should be read and savoured and reflected upon. This is a rare and magnificent work that deserves your undivided attention.
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa454e00c) out of 5 stars An Excellent Compendium Jan. 24 2010
By ThaMothership - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Some of his work is truly wonderful, and some is mediocre at best. Beyond that, I won't discuss the material in detail. You wouldn't be considering buying this book if you weren't already a fan of Campbell's work.

I can say it's great to have so much of his material in one place, and even at the hardcover price it is cheaper than buying all of his books separately.

I can also say that I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of the book itself. For example, it is not cloth bound or fancy, but instead has a very simple, no frills binding. It is simple, but solid, and stands out well among the other books on my shelf.

I was also expecting a book this thick to have thin pages, slightly better than newsprint. Instead, the pages are luxuriantly thick, allowing Campbell's simple artwork to really stand out.

If the folks at Top Shelf happen to read this review, please, please put something like this together for Glenn Dakin's comics as well.
HASH(0xa4584684) out of 5 stars A wondrous journey March 1 2014
By Christine Chambers - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My first book of this type I thought graphic novels were always about super heroes, dark villains or other things that don't grip my imagination. Alec is about the human soul and how it developed in this man from a young drifter at the King Canute tavern to a fully involved artist and father. A great sense of play, beautiful intricate illustrations and a whole lot of authentic human emotion. What's not to love?

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