Cover image for King 2
King 2
Anderson, Ho Che.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Seattle : Fantagraphic Books, [2002]

Physical Description:
69 pages : illustrations (some color) ; 28 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
E185.97.K5 A752 2002 Graphic Novel Graphic Novels
E185.97.K5 A752 2002 Graphic Novel Open Shelf

On Order



The long-awaited sequel to the graphic novel biography of the life and career of civil rights leader Reverend Martin Luther King, Jr., winner of a 1995 Parent's Choice Award and often compared to Art Spiegelman's Maus. Volume II begins where Volume I left off, probing King's life story with an unflinchingly critical eye, casting King as an ambitious, dichotomous figure deserving of his place in history but not above moral sacrifice to get there. An expressionist visual style combined with a painterly attention to detail propel the story with cinematic momentum. In colour and b/w.

Reviews 4

Booklist Review

Anderson embarked on his ambitious, multivolume comic-strip biography of Martin Luther King Jr. more than 10 years ago. The second part begins in 1958, with King recovering from the knife attack that ended the first volume, and takes the story through the Birmingham protests to a stirring conclusion with the march on Washington and the "I Have a Dream" speech. Anderson compellingly conveys the obstacles facing the civil rights movement as it struggled to achieve even the most basic goals, and he honestly depicts King's foibles and misgivings. Some passages reflect Anderson's interpretations--no one really knows, for instance, what transpired between King and President Kennedy in the Rose Garden--and his boldly expressionistic, high-contrast, black-and-white drawings accentuate the drama inherent to King's life, even in the static, talking-heads sequences that Anderson's basic faithfulness to events necessitates. The straightforwardness of Anderson's treatment also gives this comics-format account an integrity and a verisimilitude greater than any filmed docudrama could hope to achieve. --Gordon Flagg

Publisher's Weekly Review

Some who read this deluxe repackaging of Anderson's epic three-part biography of Martin Luther King Jr. will come away thinking that the great leader is even more remote and unknowable than before-and there is nothing wrong with that. King has long been a figure so ubiquitous in American culture that little of his true self remains in his frequently invoked image and words. Anderson does the man a favor by taking a spiky, fractured approach to his subject and refusing to plant a halo on his troubled head. Much of the book (packaged nicely with previously unprinted material, sketches, and a somewhat beside-the-point modern-day "prelude" titled Black Dogs) tracks King from his college days in the 1950s to his death, jamming each page with noirishly drawn frames and tightly packed political debates. Though all the great moments of his civil rights battle are here (from the March on Washington to his less-successful housing campaign in Chicago), Anderson doesn't resort to the cheap cinematic trick of success and fadeout. There is more disappointment here than celebration, suffused with the sorrowful sense of a long, long battle just barely begun. A crowning achievement, like the man it portrays. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Anderson's classic comics biography delves into the life and political struggles of Martin Luther King Jr. honestly and without idolizing this famous figure. (LJ 8/04) (c) Copyright 2012. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

School Library Journal Review

Adult/High School-Basing his graphic-novel biography of Martin Luther King, Jr., on a combination of primary-source research and editorial reflection, Anderson takes up the narrative in 1959 and carries it through the 1963 March on Washington. King's womanizing, President Kennedy's lukewarm support of civil-rights activism, Bull Connor's storied racial hatred, J. Edgar Hoover's political corruption, and the united protest efforts of college students and working-class African-American Southerners all appear on these pages. Each topic is given a scope that balances the portrait of King as both admirably brave and brilliant as well as human and single-minded. The glossy paper carries Anderson's scratchboard-influenced, black-and-white illustrations with little dimensional detail. Color appears rarely and with great significance: most dramatic is the realistic full-color spread accompanying the delivery of King's "I Have a Dream" speech that closes this volume. As with the previous one (1993), readers need to have some working knowledge of American history of the period to appreciate both foreground and background narrative and images here. However, Anderson's interpretation gives readers a compelling focal point for reviewing King as both man and as legend.-Francisca Goldsmith, Berkeley Public Library, CA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.