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Wonder Woman: Amazon. Hero. Icon. [Hardcover]

Robert Greenberger
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Hardcover, 1 April 2010 --  
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Wonder Woman: Amazon. Hero. Icon. Wonder Woman: Amazon. Hero. Icon. 5.0 out of 5 stars (1)
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Book Description

1 April 2010
Wonder Woman is a comprehensive look at the first and most important female super hero of DC Comics, from the Golden Age to the present day. Wonder Woman is the most popular female super hero of all time and a cultural icon. During her existence, she has served in the army, renounced her powers at the height of the feminist movement, and helped launch Gloria Steinem’s Ms. magazine. She has been—and continues to be—a trailblazing role model to girls and women and an integral part of the cultural zeitgeist. Loosely chronological, Wonder Woman explores idiosyncratic creator William Moulton Marston’s interest in ideas of a "new woman" for the twentieth century; costume and character story changes over the decades; the influence on all other female comic book characters since her inception; and how Wonder Woman is still powerful and relevant in today’s comic book renaissance. The book contains more than 250 Wonder Woman illustrations, including covers, interior comic art, and sketch treatments, beginning with her inception in the early 1940s to present-day treatments of the character. Celebrated artists include Alex Ross, Jim Lee, George Perez, and Brian Bolland, to name only a few. The book will also feature rare covers and pin-up posters created for past special-edition comic books. Wonder Woman is certain to appeal to fanboys and fangirls, collectors, and newcomers to the comic book genre alike.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: Universe Publishing (1 April 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0789320355
  • ISBN-13: 978-0789320353
  • Product Dimensions: 2.6 x 24.1 x 31.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 774,100 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars fabulous artwork 22 May 2012
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This book is a wonder womans fans dream,high quality paper and superb artwork to match spanning her career through the decades,a must buy for any comic book fan.
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Amazon.com: 4.6 out of 5 stars  9 reviews
17 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Must-Have for Wonder Woman Fans of All Ages! 16 April 2010
By Omar D. Odeh - Published on Amazon.com
I received my copy of Wonder Woman: Amazon, Hero, Icon and I have to say, I'm impressed. This book is beautiful, with thick glossy pages and TONS of artwork of Wonder Woman. It features a mix of written information detailing many aspects of Wonder Woman's creation and history, as well as comic pages to highlight aspects of her story.

The first thing that struck me about this book is how up-to-date it is. It features artwork and information from Wonder Woman's entire publication history, up through Gail Simone's Rise of the Olympians story arc.

It's organized very nicely. There are numerous sections detailing all aspects of Diana's life through every incarnation, from her creator to her trials; from her tools to her friends. There is even a nice section on alternate reality versions of Diana. The sections also feature large reprints of actual pages from the comics. Examples include Golden Age Hippolyte explaining the Amazon history to young Diana, Diana fighting the Echinda from George Perez's run, and even Diana in full battle armor talking to Tom Tresser from Gail Simone's run. These beautiful reprints aren't random filler; rather, they highlight the information discussed, and expand on what Robert Greenberger shared. The sections also feature panels and covers from Wonder Woman's history, sketches from some of the leading artists, and photographs of the people involved in Diana's history.

The only place I feel that this book falls short is in its citations for the images used. For most of us, if we see an image we really like, we'll attempt to seek out the story it's from. More often than not, the citations for images in this book give specific issue numbers and year information in addition to artist credits. However, there are a number of times where the citation only includes some information of the story and the artists. This makes it a little difficult for fans to seek out specific stories. This is a very small drawback to such a wonderful book (pun only slightly intended).

I really enjoy this book, and I highly suggest it to fans of Wonder Woman, both new and old. The amazing full-color artwork and full-page reprints highlight the detailed information Robert Greenberg presents from Wonder Woman's entire publication history. Plus, the book is incredibly up-to-date, so you won't feel the need to replace with a newer version for many, many years.

Edit: I did find one flaw. Wonder Woman (volume 03) Annual 01 was credited in this book as being written by Gail Simone, when it was actually written by Allan Heinberg.
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good overall pictoral view with a few errors. 4 Aug 2010
By Shannon L. Lippy - Published on Amazon.com
I'm going to try and not repeat too much of what previous reviewers have said. Yes, there are great pictures on good paper stock. It does look at Wonder Woman's past from a variety of view points from her creation, creator and aspects of her fictional life. However, the author makes a few errors in facts. To point out a couple: He uses comic cover dates as gospel when they're normally off 3 to 4 months. For instance, he says the second series of hers started in February 1987 when it actually started in October of 1986 (I remember). He also states that her re-birth in 1987 (1986) was still brought about by Aphrodite when in fact, Perez and Potter changed that to Athene and Artemis which made more sense as the amazons were a warrior culture. The goddesses then brought in other gods later on to bless and bring about Diana's birth. Aprhodite is not seen as the primary goddess figure as she was in the golden and silver age of comics. There are other minor mistakes as well, but I won't go into all of them. They're not huge, just inaccurate. Suffice it to say it's a good book for images and a good overview of who the character is and was meant to be. However, just don't take everything it says as the absolute truth. He tends to glaze over parts of her and her creator's history that don't either fit a clean storyline view for his book or socially acceptable viewpoints.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Covers a lot of ground, but takes the wrong angle! 23 Oct 2010
By TheIntruder - Published on Amazon.com
Don't get me wrong, I'm happy I bought this book. It is very well designed and the artwork is well selected. My main problem with it is that it is more of a review of WW's history as a comic book character rather than the history of her creation and publication over the last 70 odd years.

This isn't the type of book I (and probably most people) would read all the wy through from beginning to end. It is more of a coffee table book that you would pick up every now and then, look at the artwork, a few passages and then put down. However, even if I wanted to read it through I wouldn't be able to without having most of the key WW stories "spoilt". I admit that it would be impossible to write a WW history without discussing some of these things, but this book does it too much since the focus of the text is mainly on the character's fictional biography rather than the history of the character as a cultural icon. I think that the plots are better left for the DC comics themselves which will do a better job of telling her stories, don't you think?

A book like this, in my view, should tell about the history of the character in more depth. Instead we get a very brief overview of WW creator Charles Moulton's controversial views on women and feminism, his family's history, the backdrop against which WW was created, etc. We get almost no insight at all into his successor Robert Kanaigher's approach, other than, again, a short hand retelling of the stories he wrote. And there is a lot of history to tell. For example, WW's evolution with changing times, costume changes, her readership (I read somewhere that DC had assumed it to be female readers buying her comics for so many years but at some point found out that it was predominantly male) and the core reason behind her being one of the only three continuously published super-hero characters over the last 70 years (unlike Superman and Batman the reason is not solely popularity, but also because DC's contract with her creater would mean that they would lose the rights if they ceased publishing her adventures).

The book does have short sections devoted to select WW artists/writers, but again there isn't enough. First of all, the entries themselves are very short and are just straightforward biographies rather than detailing their association with WW. And secondly, there are very few entries, namely Harry Peter, George Perez, Andru and Esposito and Greg Rucka (whose inclusion seems to be based solely on the fact that he was the writter on WW at the time and not on him being of particular significance to WW's overall decades long history). There were so many others involved with WW over the last 70 years. For example, Dennis O'Neil, Dick Giordano, Gil Kane (I don't know if he drew her all that much, but he did do some amazing cover art as depicted in this volume) and Kanaigher, who wrote WW for decades. This would have been a perfect place, for example, to explore in depth Kanaigher's reported hatred for, or at least indeference towards, the character despite him having written her for so long! That to me would have been very interesting. This type of writing would probably have required more work on the part of the writer (interviews, etc) and so it seems that they have taken the easy way out by producing a book that is great to look at but not very strong in terms of substance.

Overall it is a nice book to have (hence the three stars) but if it had taken an approach closer to the DC Vault book (which is filled with quotes and interesting trivia) it could have been so much better!
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonder Woman Book 15 July 2010
By M. Hills - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
A very comprehensive history of the character of Wonder Woman...excellent pictures and graphics as her character evolved through time.
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book 27 Dec 2013
By T. Abbott - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
My girlfriend is hard to buy for but fortunately loves Wonder Woman. After reading a few reviews I decided to get this book and hope for the best. She loves the artwork in the book and it has brought back many memories for her. The only complaint she had about the book is she wished it had a whole comic book in it not just one or two pages from random comics over the years. Overall it is an excellent book and a must have for any fan.
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