Books by Mark Alan Stamaty

MACDOODLE ST. by Mark Alan Stamaty
Released: April 2, 2019

"Mostly superb with bouts of just excellent."
Rerelease of the complete comic strip by illustrator and poet Stamaty (Shake, Rattle & Turn That Noise Down!, 2010, etc.), which ran in the Village Voice in the 1970s—exploring the culture wars, the creative process, and the Zen-like powers of dishwashing. Read full book review >
Released: Jan. 12, 2010

Although Stamaty's latest graphic memoir is based on real-life events, it's also a mystery—not a whodunit, though, more of a "who's-it-for." Detailing Stamaty's lifelong enthusiasm for Elvis, the saga starts in 1955 when young Mark receives a radio as a birthday gift. Little did his parents know that popular music was poised to make a major shift, one that would turn their son into a nine-year-old pompadour-wearing, tennis-racket-strumming Elvis impersonator. Although initially his mother objects strenuously, her happiness at her son's success at a Cub Scout banquet performance shows that she is proud of his talent even if she doesn't share his taste. The author's text evokes everyday life in the '50s and briefly identifies a number of the musicians who contributed to the development of rock 'n' roll. His detailed illustrations offer plenty of context, but, like the slight plot and nostalgic tone, they will likely resonate more strongly with adults of a certain age than with children. Appended information, including the story of an impromptu performance for then-President Bill Clinton, reinforces this impression. (Graphic memoir. 7-9)Read full book review >
ALIA’S MISSION by Mark Alan Stamaty
Released: Dec. 14, 2004

Cartoonist Stamaty sees Alia of Basra as a superhero, and tells her story in black-and-white graphic-novel format. Alia was the librarian of Basra in Iraq, who, as American and British soldiers came to topple Saddam, increasingly feared for her book collection, "the irreplaceable collective memory of our people." When she could not get official help, she moved thousands of volumes into her own home and, with the help of neighbors, into a nearby restaurant, although she had a stroke at the end and much of the library building was burned. Alia is now overseeing the creation of a new library in Basra. An anthropomorphized book with hands, feet, and a cheery face narrates the tale, putting it in historical context. Stamaty's straightforward, slightly exaggerated graphic style carries the power of his story forward and end notes add information on the importance of Iraq in the history of language and libraries. Jeanette Winter's Librarian of Basra (2004) is more beautiful, but this is both worthy and compelling. (Picture book/graphic novel. 7-10)Read full book review >