THE SNOOPY TREASURES will delight any PEANUTS fan, which is everyone right?

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Snoopy Treasures Nat Gertler

THE SNOOPY TREASURES
Written by: Nat Gertler
Thunder Bay Press
$34.95

One great joy of life is spending time with my two-year-old son Nathan.  All the little moments mean so much to me, and it’s not just the big things like birthday parties, Christmas day, or vacations.  Smaller things take on new meaning when you share them with your child.  It can be a day in the park, a walk around the block, reading a book, or simply watching television.  Of course, my wife and I aspire to manage Nate’s TV time, so he embraces the joys of the larger world.  Still, the kid likes the television, but that’s not really a newsworthy statement.  For me, the best viewing is when Nate connects with programs that I enjoyed as a child.  He loves old Disney movies like DUMBO, THE LION KING, and THE JUNGLE BOOK.  Even better, he’s developed a real affinity for everything Charlie Brown and Snoopy!

That manifested itself with our first trip to the cinema as a family to see the brand new PEANUTS film.  Nate did an amazing job staying focused on the movie and not hurting the enjoyment for the other folks in the theater.  Seriously, other than a blood curdling scream when The World War I Flying Ace was successful in his mission and saying, “It’s Charlie Brown” repeatedly for a few minutes, Nathan was a model moviegoer.  Why this fun family event?  Well, this all sprung from watching IT”S THE GREAT PUMPKIN CHARLIE BROWN this past Halloween.  I told you, the boy loves the classics!  Snoopy was a on everyone’s mind in the household, so when the opportunity to review THE SNOOPY TREASURES arose, I jumped at the chance!

With the recent arrival of the PEANUTS film and the holiday season upon us, Thunder Bay Press has released this coffee table book at an opportune time.  You’ve probably seen books like this before.  Essentially, it’s an illustrated history of Snoopy on large glossy paper, but you also get pouches mixed in that hold little bits of ephemera and memorabilia.  There have been books like this for STAR WARS, SPIDER-MAN, and THE TRANSFORMERS.  If you’re a huge fan of the property, how could you go wrong?

The text is written by “Peanuts expert” Nat Gertler.  He has written about PEANUTS in past volumes, penned many comic books, and computer games as well.  His prose is well organized and he has a vibrant style that retells a history of Snoopy that includes a lot of recounting of the most memorable strips.  This doesn’t ever feel like a index of stories, though.  There are chapters about the characters conception, the human cast, Snoopy’s family, his various jobs, the memorabilia, and his time battling the Red Baron.  It’s a nice mix of storytelling, memorabilia overview, and encyclopedic resource.

The book has hundreds of illustrations that feature pictures of creator Charles Schulz, iconic strips, advertising material, and just about anything else you’d be interested in seeing.  Without a doubt, the coolest part is the “special features” which are recreations of ten pieces of Snoopy related items.  There’s a letter President Reagan sent to Schulz, a wall pennant, a cardboard pop-together bi-plane originally created by Coca Cola, as well as several drawings.  These extras turn the book into a nice little treasure trove.

Books can be expensive and a lot of people have gravitated to the digital worlds of Kindle and Nook, so a book like THE PEANUTS TREASURES, with all its extras, stands out as one you need to own and enjoy in print.  The pages are loaded with beautiful images, well written, engaging text, and there’s a veritable trove of goodies squeezed inside.  Snoopy’s generational appeal is illustrated in my own household, and I’m sure it’s the same in yours!

Grade: 
4.5 / 5.0