Masterful Marks: Cartoonists Who Changed the World


In a first-of-its-kind collection, award-winning illustrators celebrate the lives of the visionary artists who created the world of comic art and altered pop culture forever.

No one has told the story of comic art in its own medium, until now. In Masterful Marks, top illustrators—including Drew Friedman, Nora Krug, Denis Kitchen, and Peter Kuper—reveal how sixteen visionary cartoonists overcame massive financial, political, and personal challenges to create a new form of art that now defines our world.

Superhero comics didn’t exist until two teenagers from Cleveland created the first superhero of all time: Superman. Advertising artist Theodor Geisel released his first book in 1937 as Dr. Seuss—and children’s literature was never the same. Charles M. Schulz’s perseverance and passion gave the world Peanuts, the world’s most famous comic strip. Featuring these tales, and profiling such giants as Walt Disney, Robert Crumb, and the creators of MAD, Tintin, and manga, Masterful Marks illustrates how graphic storytelling became such a rich and popular medium.

Masterful Marks is a stunning portrait of the comic art’s aesthetic heritage and a powerful story of how creative vision can change the world.


North American publisher: Simon & Schuster

Foreign rights contact: Marcella Berger,

Film rights contact: Gillian MacKenzie,


“Penetrating, intimate, entertaining, and bittersweet ... Beauchamp has given the world a masterful work.” —Joel Surnow, co-creator of 24

“A unique blend of love and irreverence.” —Leonard Maltin, film critic and historian

"[W]hat’s great here is really terrific." —Kirkus Reviews

“What a joy to see the raw, unvarnished insides of these handmade lives finally placed in the right hands: their heirs in art—masters who learned from the masters. How smart of Monte Beauchamp to cast their stories in the visual structures, color palettes, and signature rhythms of the very art forms that our strangest and best-loved supermen originally expanded to worldwide glory.” —David Michaelis author of Schulz and Peanuts: A Biography