Bill Watterson’s The Mysteries and The Calvin and Hobbes Portable Compendium

Andrews McMeel has released their notice of the new Bill Watterson book revealing little new information about The Mysteries but included the announcement of the publication of newly formatted Calvin and Hobbes books.

From Andrews McMeel’s press release regarding The Mysteries:

The deluxe hardcover edition features elements of a classic fairytale book, with exquisite art and a compelling, provocative story that invites readers to examine their place in the universe and their responsibility to others and the planet we all share. The book will be available exclusively in print and is designed to be an immersive experience that explores the limits of human understanding. A fable that dares to intimate the big questions about our place in the universe, the richly illustrated volume will be a treasured collectible for years to come, provoking pause and reflection.

“The book will be available exclusively in print.” So no kindle or other versions. Fans of Watterson will have to buy a hard copy of the hardcover.

Also I note that the Amazon and Barnes and Noble pages have scrubbed the preview pages of The Mysteries, though the four images are all over the world wide web now.

images © Bill Watterson

The press release also announced the issuing of new format Calvin and Hobbes books.

In another creative development from Watterson, The Calvin and Hobbes Portable Compendium features an all-new design of the bestselling Calvin and Hobbes collections, introducing a new generation of readers to a compact, portable format.  The first set of two volumes (in a series of seven sets) is set for release on August 29, 2023…

Watterson selected the vivid, evocative cover and new interior art from original color separations from the syndicated feature, which appeared in more than 2,400 newspapers. The art, in an accessible and transportable format, offers a whole new experience for readers to enjoy the timeless classic adventures of the comic strip … The entire series has a colorful theme of Calvin and Hobbes dancing across the spines of the volumes, which will be a welcome and exuberant addition to family bookshelves.

Left unsaid is what will be included – dailies? Sundays? The Complete? Selected strips? – or what size will be considered “portable.” (If anyone could revive mass market paperback comic books it would be Calvin and Hobbes.)

4 thoughts on “Bill Watterson’s The Mysteries and The Calvin and Hobbes Portable Compendium

  1. I’m skeptical about what could be a money-maker when Bill was always anti merchandisei. Has he sold out or okay with just books? I’m sure I can’t afford these special editions.

    1. Mr. Watterson has never objected to reprint collections. I think the old ones are still top sellers for Andrews McMeel! What I gather he objects to is merchandising that pulls the characters out of their comic strip context: Calvin pajamas or Hobbes toothbrushes, or C&H promoting an insurance company. I’m not sure how this will differ from the Complete C&H–maybe it’ll just be smaller, more affordable, or include some “making of” material?

      1. I’m curious what they could offer to seduce me into buying these new books. I bought the first two collections “Calvin and Hobbes” and “Something Under the Bed is Drooling.” Then I bought “the Essential Calvin and Hobbes” which collected the first two books into one edition. This continued through the entire series. In addition I have “The Complete Calvin and Hobbes.” And the entire ten years can be read at GoComics.
        In the old days, before everything was at hand, I bought an English double-album, paying import prices, to get one song I didn’t have; I paid A-side collector prices to get the B-side of a 45 because that was the only way to get the studio version of a song I only had in the live version.
        I don’t know that I’m that fanatic over Calvin and Hobbes.
        Of course there is a new generation of comic fans to entertain with graphic novel-sized(?) editions.

  2. Yeah, I wonder if by “portable” they mean the graphic novel size, 6×9 inches, which is a common book size for kids graphic novels, and also collections of comics (“Wallace the Brave”, “Phoebe and Her Unicorn”, and “Big Nate” books are published in that size).

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