I’m a huge Bone fan. I’ve got the collected volume, Rose, and Stupid, Stupid Rat-tails. I spied on a friend’s bookshelf, though, something I hadn’t seen before: Tall Tales.
Bone, if you don’t know, is a tremendously enjoyable comic series. It’s in the same general vein as Lord of the Rings, Stardust, and The Princess Bride, and is just utterly delightful in every way. It’s got beautiful art, hilarious dialogue, thrills and chases, and peril aplenty.
Tall Tales collects three very short and equally slight tales set in the Bone universe. Each is told around a campfire by Smiley Bone in a framing narrative where he, three young Bones, and Bartleby (the cute rat creature from Bone) have gone on a camping trip. The first involves Fone Bone and Phoney going on a brief and fruitless treasure hunt, while the second two depict tales from the youth of Big Johnson Bone (bombastic founder of Boneville and protagonist of Stupid Stupid Rat Tails). There is a final fourth tale that is much longer (accounting for about 50% of the volume), which is the story told in Stupid Stupid Rat Tails.
So, if you own SSRT, then you already have 50% of Tall Tales. The other stories recounted in the volume really are pretty ephemeral, so I couldn’t recommend that you purchase it in addition to SSRT. That said, if you don’t already own SSRT, then I think Tall Tales would be the better purchase. You would miss out on the extra story that’s in SSRT (drawn by Usagi Yojimbo’s Stan Sakai), but you would be getting extra Bartleby (sooo cuuuute). More importantly, the stories are in colour (instead of SSRT‘s black and white), which looks fantastic.
It was lovely to have an opportunity to return to the world of Bone. If you haven’t had the pleasure yet, do try to make time…