Confessions, Romances, Secrets And Temptations: Archer St. John And the St. John Romance Comics

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Fantagraphics Books, Apr 9, 2007 - Comics & Graphic Novels - 112 pages
2 Reviews
A tour through the best of the romance genre of comics in the 1950s.

Confessions, Romances, Secrets, and Temptations is the companion volume to John Benson's popular anthology of romance comics, Romance Without Tears. Published in the 1950s by Archer St. John, the stories in that volume were decidedly different from the typical romance comics, just as St. John was decidedly different from the typical comics publisher. This new book explores the background of these comics and their publisher, including a short biography, interviews with the editors and artists who worked for the company, and critical commentary.

In his research for Romance Without Tears, the author was left with a rich body of material about one of the few quality-driven 1950s comics publishers. St. John's reputation as a fair and honest publisher attracted many of the top artists of the day, including Matt Baker, Ric Estrada, Everett Raymond Kinstler, Joe Kubert, Bob Powell, Leonard Starr, and George Tuska. In addition to interviewing Estrada, Kubert, and Starr, Benson talks with several St. John staffers, including editor Irwin Stein, production man Warren Kremer, and editorial assistant Nadine King. Together they provide an engaging account of Archer St. John and the atmosphere he nourished to create these distinctive comics.

Confessions contains a time chart of every title published by St. John (all genres), showing issue number and date, and a complete, detailed checklist of all the company's romance comics, giving story titles, artist credits, and cross-indexing the extensive reprints. The book is lavishly illustrated with examples of the comics, and includes rare photos and other visuals from the period.

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Review: Confessions, Romances, Secrets, and Temptations: Archer St. John and the St. John Romance Comics

User Review  - David Macpherson - Goodreads

I liked this book a lot. Two thirds of it was of interviews of those who worked at that company in the early fifties. It became an almost rashomon like story of what people remembered. The book peters ... Read full review

Review: Confessions, Romances, Secrets, and Temptations: Archer St. John and the St. John Romance Comics

User Review  - John Marr - Goodreads

An excellent bit of publishing history focussed on the romance comics published by St John publishing company. Interviews with editors & artists, a bio of the founder, etc, all nicely done. This is ... Read full review

Contents

Ill Take Romance
6
Irwin Stein
8
Nadine French King
24

14 other sections not shown

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About the author (2007)

John Benson is the editor of "Romance Without Tears: 50s Love Comics--With a Twist", and he was the first to do in-depth interviews with many major comics artists, including Will Eisner, Bernard Krigstein, Harvey Kurtzman, and Gil Kane. He is editor of two respected published periodicals about comics, "Panels" and "Squa Tront". He lives with his wife in New York City.

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