The Comic: The Comic Book History of Comics by Fred Van Lente, with art by Ryan Dunlavey.
What it’s about: It’s right there in the title. This comic is the history of comics, told as a comic. It’s great as a textbook, going thoroughly into the lives of some key creators while giving you an excellent survey of important milestones. This book is superior to similar projects for being a funny comic, but also for showing the interconnectedness between comics and other art movements. I don’t think it’s possible to understand American culture in the 1970s without knowing the role art and comics played in it. This book will educate you!
Why you should read it: It’s educational and fun! Actually, the team of Fred Van Lente and Ryan Dunlavey is prolific and hilarious. These two often collaborate, usually on nonfiction. It is their stated goal to make their readers laugh so hard that they forget that they are actually learning tons.
Also, did you know: Not about the book, but trivia from the book: Frank Gorshin (who played the Riddler on the old Batman TV show) and Adam West (who played Batman) used to attend orgies together, but were often derided for insisting that they attend in character!