Cammuso, Frank 1965-

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Cammuso, Frank 1965-

PERSONAL:

Born 1965, in NY. Education: Graduated from Syracuse University, 1987.

ADDRESSES:

Home—Syracuse, NY. E-mail—[email protected]

CAREER:

Syracuse Post-Standard, Syracuse, NY, political cartoonist; former stand-up comedian.

WRITINGS:

Below the Belt (collection of political cartoons), book design by Susan Santola, North Country Books (Utica, NY), 1993.

(With Hart Seely) 2007-Eleven: And Other American Comedies (stories), Villard (New York, NY), 2000.

The Dodgeball Chronicles ("Knights of the Lunch Table" series), Graphix (New York, NY), 2008.

(With Jay Lynch) Otto's Orange Day, Toon Books (New York, NY), 2008.

"MAX HAMM" GRAPHIC NOVELS

Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Nite Owl Comix (Syracuse, NY), 2002.

Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Volume 1: The Big Sheep, Nite Owl Comix (Syracuse, NY), 2003.

The Long Ever After, Part 1: The Seven Deadly Sins, Nite Owl Comix (Syracuse, NY), 2003.

The Long Ever After, Part 2: The Glass Slipper, Nite Owl Comix (Syracuse, NY), 2004.

The Long Ever After, Part 3: The Magic Mirror, Nite Owl Comix (Syracuse, NY), 2004.

Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective (contains four "Max Hamm" stories), Nite Owl Comix (Syracuse, NY), 2005.

Author of columns with Hart Seely for various periodicals. Contributor of political cartoons to the New York Times, USA Today, Newsweek, and other periodicals.

Contributor of fiction and satire to the New Yorker, New York Times, Village Voice, and National Public Radio (NPR).

SIDELIGHTS:

Frank Cammuso may be best known for the political cartoons he draws for the Syracuse Post-Standard and other periodicals, but he is also the author and artist behind Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective. This private-eye pig, along with his partner, Humpty Dumpty, form the Hamm and Eggs Detective Agency, at least until Humpty Dumpty is murdered. In Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Volume 1: The Big Sheep, Max tries to figure out who killed his friend and also investigates the disappearance of Little Bo Peep's sheep. With the help of snitching jazz musician Little Boy Blue, Max discovers a giant criminal enterprise that includes would-be Mafia dons the Grimm Brothers and Mother Goose. The book's design is "a perfect mimicry of the Little Golden Book storybook format," Greg McElhatton commented in a review for iComics.com. McElhatton also praised Cammuso's illustrations, noting that "from Little Bo Peep's hugely innocent gaze to the sleazy look of Little Boy Blue, each character is carefully crafted for maximum storytelling effect." "It's simply one of the cleverest parodies of private eyes I've ever read," Kevin Burton Smith wrote in a review for the Thrilling Detective Web site.

Cammuso also wrote another book of parodies, 2007-Eleven: And Other American Comedies, with Hart Seely. The twenty-nine stories imagine familiar pop cultural figures in unfamiliar circumstances—fictional superspy and ladies' man James Bond is sued for sexual harassment; playwright David Mamet writes catalog copy; homemaking maven Martha Stewart prepares to host the biblical Last Supper. In the best-received piece in the collection, "The Xmas Files," X-Files television series heroes Fox Mulder and Dana Scully investigate mysterious nighttime home invasions, all occurring just before Christmas, carried out by some powerful alien creature whom readers will recognize as Santa Claus. The book's "safe, silly brand of humor will appeal to a wide audience," concluded Booklist reviewer James Klise.

The Dodgeball Chronicles is the first book in the "Knights of the Lunch Table" series. Cammuso wrote and illustrated the book, which follows the adventures of Artie King. Artie has a terrible start at his brand-new middle school—he misses the bus on the first day, thanks to his evil sister; gets picked on by the local bullies; and is sent to detention by the principal. Hoping to improve his reputation, he boasts that he is a whiz at dodgeball—a championship player—but the lie soon comes back to haunt him. The Dodgeball Chronicles includes references to the legend of King Arthur that are designed to entertain readers who are familiar with the story, but will not distract or confuse those who are not. In a review for Booklist, Francisca Goldsmith remarked that "Cammuso's text is witty and his cartoons energetic; his pictures speak as clearly as his words."

Cammuso wrote Otto's Orange Day, a comic-strip-style book aimed at young readers, with Jay Lynch. In the book, an orange cat named Otto receives a magic lamp from his aunt. When the genie inside the lamp offers him a wish, Otto decides everything in the world should be orange, as that is his favorite color. Unfortunately, he soon discovers that an all-orange world causes a few problems as well, and he must seek his aunt's assistance in outwitting the genie and restoring his world to its original state. Joy Fleishhacker, in a review of Otto's Orange Day for School Library Journal, stated that "clear chapter divisions, a clean graphic design, and large-size print make this title more appropriate for early readers."

BIOGRAPHICAL AND CRITICAL SOURCES:

PERIODICALS

Booklist, May 1, 2000, James Klise, review of 2007-Eleven: And Other American Comedies, p. 1639; August 1, 2005, Ray Olson, review of Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Volume 1: The Big Sheep, p. 2012; March 15, 2008, Francisca Goldsmith, review of The Dodgeball Chronicles, p. 67; March 15, 2008, Jesse Karp, review of Otto's Orange Day, p. 66.

Kirkus Reviews, June 1, 2008, review of The Dodgeball Chronicles.

Publishers Weekly, April 24, 2000, review of 2007-Eleven, p. 73; July 11, 2005, review of Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, p. 65.

School Library Journal, November 1, 2005, Jennifer Feigelman, review of Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Volume 1: The Big Sheep, p. 174; May 1, 2008, Joy Fleishhacker, review of Otto's Orange Day, p. 153.

ONLINE

Frank Cammuso Home Page,http://www.cammuso.com (October 24, 2005).

Graphic Classics,http://www.graphicclassics.com/ (October 24, 2005), author information.

iComics.com,http://www.icomics.com/ (October 27, 2005), Greg McElhatton, review of Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Volume 1.

Lambiek.net,http://www.lambiek.net/ (October 24, 2005), author information.

Read about Comics,http://www.readaboutcomics.com/ (July 18, 2008), Greg McElhatton, review of The Dodgeball Chronicles.

Thrilling Detective,http://www.thrillingdetective.com/ (October 24, 2005), Kevin Burton Smith, review of Max Hamm, Fairy Tale Detective, Volume 1.