The Language of Comics - Ed. Robin Varnum and Christina T. Gibbons

Following McCloud's groundbreaking work, comics gradually gained acceptance and popularity among academia. In the Language of Comics, published in 2002, editors Varnum and Gibbons present a collection of essays that further McCloud's analysis of the special relationship between word and image in comics. Mostly written by authors who are very well versed in the literary and semiotic theory, essays presented in the book offer different perspectives into the issue while also concentrating on diverse parts of the history of comics.
Editors has succeeded in collecting essays that are about as diverse topics as the Wile E. Coyote animated series and the silent Chat Noir comics. This diversity of the subject matter is very refreshing as most of the later literature will focus on more mainstream works.
Although not a book to be read from cover to cover, Language of Comics is an important collection with a rare academic depth and diversity of subject matter. Maybe after a initiation period with the comics history and an introduction to theory by McCloud, it would make a very effective illustration of how to broaden and deepen one's knowledge and present examples of very interesting and creative places to apply in the comics history.