Ottaviani speaks

Who has heard of Jim Ottaviani? He’s a guy with an excellent line of science-related comics — I have “Bone Sharps, Cowboys, and Thunder Lizards”, but there are quite a few others I have to buy now — and now Scott Hatfield interviews Ottaviani at the San Diego ComicCon. Remember, we need multiple approaches to get science across to people, and comics/graphic novels have wide appeal!


  1. Lee Brimmicombe-Wood says

    Jim is a lovely guy. Very sharp and clued up. I recall a pleasant evening spent with him and his partner in Ann Arbor. I might still have a copy of his Feynman comic around somewhere.

    Buy anything of his you can lay your hands on.

  2. clinteas says

    “Two-fisted science”?

    Now that might get the religious ones interested after all…..

  3. says

    I got the preview of “Bone Sharps” a few years ago on Free Comic Book Day. It looked like a hell of a book.

    For a somewhat less realistic and funnier look at science, try “Five Fists of Science” by Matt Fraction. Completely irrelevant, but it’s a fun take on Tesla, Twain, Marconi,and Edison.

  4. Jams says

    I don’t recommend The Atheist. It’s been described as an elaborate waist of a perfectly good title (spoiler: it features souls from hell).

  5. says

    Whenever I see anything about science comics, I always want to plug the outstanding (IMO) work of Jay Hosler, biologist/cartoonist and author/illustrator of Clan Apis and The Sandwalk Adventures. Beautiful artwork and good science as well!

  6. Pat says

    I’ve got his Feynman book and “Fallout.” Ottaviani does great work. The solid storytelling can distract from the fact that his comics are also very thoroughly researched.

    If Jim Ottaviani reads this, Pat says, “Hello from a fellow Ann Arborite. Kudos!”

  7. MathMike says

    I had the library where I teach high school get a couple of these books, Fallout, Suspended In Language & the women of science book.

  8. says

    We had him on Skepticality for an interview a while back. You can go to our archives and download that interview and take a listen! Jim is a cool guy… :)

  9. nipsey russell says

    last week i stopped in to the philadelphia borders which has a pretty good selection (of fiction and magazines, anyway). I had my 8 month old strapped to me and thought i’d check out the children’s science section and maybe see if i could find any cephalopod books for when he’s a little older. I mean kids gotta like squids, right??
    Ok…here’s childrens book….and here’s ONE bookcase with a sign that says “Science/Nature”….and here’s a hannah montanna book…WTF????…and here’s about 3 other books that might qualify as science. PUH-thetic. I was going to take a picture on my cell phone but it didnt work out.
    sorry, off topic!

  10. says

    “Remember, we need multiple approaches to get science across to people, and comics/graphic novels have wide appeal!”

    I hate to quibble with a brother while he’s speaking the Truth, but comics are also valuable and enlightening in their own right as visual and/or narrative art.

    That said, I read Otovani’s “Bone Sharps…” and “The Bonehunter’s Revenge” (a regular book with just a few pictures stuck together in the middle) back to back, and the comic book wins by a comfortable margin. Yay, Ottovani!

  11. Cliff Hendroval says

    Reminds me of the work of Larry Gonick, whose “Cartoon History of the Universe” series is actually a pretty decent overview. (I see he has a “Cartoon Guide to Genetics” – you may want to check that out to see how useful it might be for bringing newbies up to speed.)

  12. Wowbagger says

    Psalm Pilot,

    I give you 8 out of 10 for the name, because I do think it’s clever. Beyond that, though, you’re an idiot and your threats are meaningless.

    Cram your scripture in your jesus-hole – with walnuts. And a cracker.

  13. says

    Jim’s a great interview. When I last saw him at the MoCCA Art Fest he told me a very funny story about falling off a mountain. Well, it wasn’t funny at the time it was happening, mind you…