Complete Peanuts HC Vol 14: 1977-1978
By Charles M. Schultz
344 pages, hard cover, black and white
As the 1970s wind down, the last two recurring Peanuts characters have fallen into place: Snoopy's brother Spike and the youngest Van Pelt sibling, Rerun. But that doesn't mean Schulz's creativity has diminished; in fact, this volume features an amazing profusion of hilariously distinctive new one- (or two-) shot characters! For instance, in an epic five-week sequence, when Charlie Brown, found guilty by the EPA of biting the Kite-Eating tree, he goes on the lam and ends up coaching the 'Goose Eggs,' a group of diminutive baseball players, Austin, Ruby, Leland, and -did you know there was a second Black Peanuts character, aside from Franklin?-Milo. Also: a tennis-playing Snoopy ends up reluctantly teamed with the extreme Type 'A' athlete Molly Volley... who then reappears later in the book, now facing off against her nemesis, 'Crybaby' Boobie. (Honest!) Add in Sally's new camp friend Eudora, the thuggish 'caddymaster' who shoots down Peppermint Patty and Marcie's new vocation, an entire hockey team, and a surprise repeat appearance by Linus's sweetheart 'Truffles' (creating a love triangle with Sally), all in addition to the usual cast of beloved characters (including the talking schoolhouse and the doghouse-jigsawing cat, who gets ahold of Linus's blanket in this one), and you've got a veritable crowd of characters.