I had heard a lot of comments about Jeff Smiths Bone, but never got around to check it out. Last year (read: 2004), I spotted this collected edition of the entire series at the Gothenburg Book Fair. It was a nice looking edition, but I figured that I could still get it cheaper via the internet and well, I was right about that. The collection was purchased during the fall, but remained unread on the bookshelf for a long time; I guess one hesitates to start on a 1300(+) pages volume. When I recently got around to reading it, I was just blown away. It is quite honestly one of the best comics I have ever read - well, among the best anything I have ever read to be honest, and in that sense it ranks up there with other comics like Alan Moore's From Hell, J. M. DeMatteis's Moonshadow and Will Eisner's To the Heart of the Storm. That being said, Bone is very different from these graphic novels.
Bone is a warm, funny and intelligent fantasy narrative which told by someone in complete control of the medium he works in. Everything is narrated either entirely visually or through dialogue (i.e. no captions). Long 'silent' passages acquire an almost filmic quality and are expertly balanced with regards to the dialogue which sometimes become almost philosophical or historical in its tone, but never becomes dreary. Jeff Smith uses the medium of comics extremely well and the result is pure joy to read.
Add to all of the above that Smith has managed to put together a phenomenal character gallery, create an expanding, well structured and very intelligent plot, and that the style of his art is quite exquisite. This is clearly a strongly recommended purchase and read. This collected format, apart from looking very nice in the shelf, also has the advantage of containing the whole story... And believe me, once you start, you will not want to stop until it's all done.