From the dive bars of Denver, Colorado, to the seedy motels of Columbus, Ohio, Fante Bukowski has lived a literary tradition as identifiable and essential to American writings as it is currently at odds with contemporary mores: a tradition of toxic masculinity, white privilege, Daddy issues, alcoholism, and narcissism, all in the name of art. This landmark volume compiles the trilogy of works that have preserved Bukowski's legacy—Fante Bukowski, Fante Bukowski Two, and Fante Bukowski Three: A Perfect Failure—as chronicled by acclaimed cartoonist Noah Van Sciver.
The Complete Works of Fante Bukowski also puts back into circulation Bukowski's first self-published chapbook, 6 Poems, painstakingly restored for this collection after the entire original print run was destroyed in a motel fire—what few copies were circulated now command collectors prices in the rare books market. Novelist Ryan Boudinot (Blueprints of the Afterlife) pens a new introduction to this volume as well, which is bookended with a selection of Bukowski "visual tributes" by many notable visual artists who have been influenced by Bukowski's oeuvre.
"Noah Van Sciver absolutely nails the mortifying lack of self-awareness of insufferable young artistes everywhere: the coffee-shop denizens, the wannabe skid row poets, the pretentious dreamers who so earnestly believe themselves to be legendary they never once consider that their shit-art merits no such adulation. They're all there in these pages, waiting for you to tell them how great they are." — Adam Cayton-Holland (Comedian and Writer)
"At its deepest, Fante Bukowski stands as a commentary on hordes of recognition-hungry artists with nothing to say, but as a straight parody, Fante Bukowski is hilarious enough to summon tears." — Paste Magazine
"An authoritative, albeit tongue-in-check, account of the life, works, and dubious character of the fictional Bukowski" — Publishers Weekly
"Van Sciver has established himself as a thoughtful cartoonist with a talent for exploring the complexities of the human condition with a pointed sense of humor, and Fante Bukowski highlights the combination of desperation and foolhardiness that makes this character an especially compelling trainwreck." — A.V. Club
"Readers may cringe at Fante’s clueless self-delusion, but as irredeemable as he might be, they’re also likely to root for him just a bit." — Booklist
"Van Sciver [has] struck gold with his masterful skewering of the self-important, self-proclaimed tortured geniuses who stink out the fringes of the literary world." — Broken Frontier