For insight into the early days of superhero comics, check out Tales to Astonish, pop-culture journalist Ronin Ro's streetwise biography of Jack Kirby, the man who created Captain America and who, during the great Silver Age of comics in the 1960s, teamed up with the legendary Stan Lee at Marvel Comics to introduce basically every superhero anyone's ever heard of, from the Incredible Hulk, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men to Thor and the Silver Surfer. Kirby is also the inspiration for Michael Chabon's The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay. A complicated figure often surrounded by controversy, among most comics fans today he is revered and spoken of in hallowed tones. This fascinating biography helps to explain why.

 

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