"I CAN'T STAND IT -- I JUST CAN'T STAND IT!"
If you are a Boomer, or even a Gen-X'er, you will probably recognize this lament as Charlie Brown's response to the recurring crises in his life - another shutout loss by his baseball team, the missed football kick as Lucy snatches the ball away at the last moment, failure to receive a valentine from the little red-haired girl, the kite hopelessly entangled in the "kite-eating tree." Life is hard for Charlie Brown. Even his own dog, Snoopy, treats him with indifference and refers to him (in thought) as "that round-headed kid."
Readers of Charles Schulz's celebrated Peanuts comic strip will be pleased to learn that Seattle publisher Fantagraphics is reissuing the entire run of the comic (1950-2000) in volumes covering two years each, dailies and Sunday strips. Most Peanuts compilations have tended to be either thematic in nature or random grab bags. With these Fantagraphics volumes, you can follow the development of the strip as characters (Peppermint Patty) and situations (awaiting the Great Pumpkin) are introduced for the first time.
RCPL has all of the Complete Peanuts volumes published so far. I began by reading the one covering the year of my birth (1961) and have now read through the years up to the most recently published collection, 1979-1980, which came out this year. The library also has books about Peanuts and Schulz himself, including David Michaelis's noted 2007 biography. Finally, don't forget the Peanuts TV specials, many of which can be found on in RCPL's collection, including A Charlie Brown Christmas, A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving, and He's Your Dog, Charlie Brown.