Cover image for The essential George Booth
The essential George Booth
Booth, George, 1926-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Workman Pub. Co., [1998]

Physical Description:
viii, 165 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm.
General Note:
"A Lee Lorenz book."
Added Author:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
NC1429.B666 A4 1998 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



This volume focuses on George Booth, featuring some of his best cartoons, as well as insight into background, influences, inspirations and working habits. Known primarily for his unmistakeable characters, Booth combines warmth, energy, quirkiness and small detail in his cartoons.

Reviews 1

Booklist Review

There is still some life in the moribund forms of magazine gag cartooning and celebrity caricature, at least in the hands of past masters. A new series, the Essential Cartoonist Library, initially spotlights Booth, whose scribbly eccentrics have become as familiar to recent New Yorker readers as Thurber's dogs were to a previous generation. Booth's familiars are all here--crotchety couples, pixilated old ladies, imperturbable auto mechanics, and deranged dogs (however, the book startlingly reveals that Booth has never owned a dog)--in more than 100 cartoons rendered in his distinctively antic style. A New Yorker mainstay for three decades, Booth's difference from his contemporaries is that, clever as his gags are, his drawings are comical enough to elicit laughter all on their own. Enhancing the cartoons' appeal here is Booth's commentary in an interview with former New Yorker cartoon editor Lee Lorenz. On another plane altogether is the work of Booth's fellow New Yorker contributor, Steig, whose tenure at the magazine began in its golden age. Starting in 1930, Steig at first produced fairly conventional cartoons depicting everything from Fifth Avenue "swells" to the precocious kids of his popular Small Fry series. Gradually, he began concurrently producing what he called his "symbolic" drawings--more adventurous, personal illustrations that prefigured Saul Steinberg's work. In his 60s, Steig began yet a third activity, as a prolific author-illustrator of children's books. This lavish coffee-table tome does justice to his multifaceted, 70-year career. More than 400 black-and-white and color illustrations are accompanied by informative text by his and Booth's old editor, Lorenz. At 95, Hirschfeld is the sole survivor of a golden age of caricature that flourished between the world wars. He has applied his instantly recognizable, looping line to entertainers ranging from burlesque clowns Weber and Fields to the Seinfeld cast. His work began appearing in various New York newspapers in the 1920s, but he has been most closely associated with the New York Times, in which his drawings with the name of his daughter, Nina, hidden in the line work are a Sunday tradition. Here, hundreds of illustrations are wittily annotated by Hirschfeld himself. Times theater critic Mel Gussow affectionately details the artist's glamorous life, and other writers, including Kurt Vonnegut and Arthur Miller, weigh in, too. Any comprehensive overview of Hirschfeld's career is also a visual history of twentieth-century American show business. With previous Hirschfeld collections out of print, this book offers the most convenient way to ensure that this major popular artist is represented in library collections. --Gordon Flagg

Table of Contents

Preface Beginnings
Mother, Dad, and the Family Summer Job Lost Love
The Few, the Proud, the Marines Big Town Paying the Rent
At the New Yorker
Repertory CompanyMrs. Ritterhouse The Garage The Stuff Cartoons
Are Made of Yard Work Loners, Oddballs, and Misfits Crimes of Youth
Canines, Felines, and Behemoths
Upper Crust Cavemen
""DEARMr. Booth"" Farther Afield
Comic Strips Illustrated Books for Children and Others Greeting Cards
""Doing the Batch""
Captions Ideas Gagmen Sight Gags Techniques Work Habits