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One of my earliest comics memories was discovering two books at my local library when I was around 9 or 10. They had Batman From the 30’s to the 70’s and Superman from the 30’s to the 70’s, both in hardcover and on the shelves with all the other books. I must have taken them out fifty times. It was a terrific way for me to discover more about some of the superheros I was enjoying in comics. I think they actually may be the true first trade editions, both published by Bonanza Books.

Through the years I have had favorite story arcs in various series and I love that the comic book companies are releasing so man of them. Strangely, aside from the Archive editions or the black and white collections that reprint whole series, there haven’t been all that many older story arcs re-released.
Until now.
Welcome to DC COMICS CLASSIC LIBRARY. Hard cover editions reprinting in fully remastered color story arcs of classic tales. The first two are SUPERMAN: KRYPTONITE NEVERMORE and LEGION OF SUPERHEROES: THE LIFE AND DEATH OF FERRO LAD.

I remember reading pieces of the Superman story as a kid and it really stuck with me over the years and so having it all collected is wonderful for me. Written by Dennis O’Neil and drawn by Curt Swan this was the archetype Superman for me, what I would use to gauge all other stories I would later read. The book opens with an introduction by Paul Levitz and it’s the perfect opening to this collection. Book ending the collection is an afterward by Dennis O’Neil. What fills the pages in between are issues of Superman from 1971 complete with covers by Neal Adams and one damn cool story idea. Superman is truly invulnerable as all Kryptonite becomes inert. But as is the case with most gift horses, a look in this mouth will show a downside that could cripple the man of steel. This is must own Superman stories.

The Legion book with Ferro Lad is also a must have for Legion fans. Collecting the rise and demise of a true hero this covers the Jim Shooter tales from 66 and 67. We are introduced to this enigmatic hero and see him quickly become an asset to the legion, only to eventually sacrifice himself to save the universe. This is the kind of story telling that remains every bit as good all these years later. For me the only downside to this collection is that I wish they had also added Superboy #206 with the ghost of Ferro Lad and Invisible kid, I think that would have book-ended this nicely.
Again. Paul Levitz does a wonderful introduction and the afterward by Jim Shooter is worth the cover price.

These books are exactly what they say they are, Library Books. And while they are perfect for your own comic library I would urge yo to ask your local library to get them as well, because there is a whole new generation of kids just waiting to read these stories, even if they don’t know it yet.

Thanks DC.