I must confess that, other than the holiday TV specials, Peanuts was never one of my favorite comic strips as a kid. It remained a mystery to me why it held such a position of honor as the first cartoon to greet readers on Sunday morning as I skipped ahead to Calvin and Hobbes. In his new biography of Charles Schulz, David Michaelis reveals why the strip may not have been enticing to a nine-year-old: It deals primarily with adult issues inspired by Schulz's own insecurities, his fascination with Citizen Kane, his marriages, and his obsessive devotion to his art. In this quick-paced but dense biography, Michaelis examines the man behind the multibillion-dollar empire and finds an artist still driven by a sense of being abandoned and undervalued as a child. But Michaelis does not present just a one-note man. We see his evolution as a man and an artist mirrored in his comic strip. Snoopy did more, after all, than just battle the Red Baron. For more info call 651.225.8989.
Tue., Oct. 30, 7 p.m., 2007