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The Dreamer

The Dreamer back

Will Eisner

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Page 45 Review by Stephen

More hard graft, these are the creative and publishing years that Eisner hops over in TO THE HEART OF THE STORM, having detailed them here in this earlier work. It's more heavily disguised autobiography than TO THE HEART OF THE STORM but Denis Kitchen, formerly publisher of Kitchen Sink, is on hand to provide detailed annotations and historical corrections.

And it really was history in the making as Eisner rejects a lucrative job offer from the mafia-run distribution network to provide illegal, erotic knock-offs of established cartoon strips and instead embarks on a pioneering publishing venture to produce new material rather than reprints, and thousands of pages at $5 a pop. This he does almost single-handedly to begin with and then, as a pragmatic compromise, by developing an in-house production line akin to a studio or, erm, a sweat shop! Along the way you'll encounter Bob Kane, a very early close friend, see Eisner reject Superman who takes off at DC (oh wait, he doesn't mention that here, but it happened!), and watch Will lose his company $3,000 by refusing to lie at trial about a deliberate Superman rip-off called Wonder Man.

Finally his long hours are rewarded and he takes a leap of faith by selling his share in the publishing business to accept an offer to provide a syndicated, regular and original 16-page comicbook supplement to newspapers. As a reward he was allowed the unheard of privilege of retaining ownership of his character. The character? The Spirit.

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