Good news! Funky Winkerbean books do exist. It's just a matter of knowing where to look.
The most current, most accessible books by Tom Batiuk are:
Funky Winkerbean: Could Be a Book Deal Here by Tom Batiuk
NBM Publishing, Inc., 156163266X, $9.95
This is the most recent collection of Funky Winkerbean strips to be published in years! This book features the strips concerning Susan's suicide attempt, Les and Lisa's troubled courtship and European chase, Les's blossoming writing career, the post office bombing that injured Lisa, and Les and Lisa's Halloween wedding!
Funky Winkerbean: Could Be a Book Deal Here is available now through online and regular bookstores and is a must for any Funky fan!
Lisa's Story by Tom Batiuk
Perigee, 0399526668, $12.95
This is a collection of the Funky strips concerning Lisa's struggle with breast cancer, and is published in conjunction with the National Alliance of Breast Cancer Organization. A portion of the profits from this book will go to NABCO. Having coped with my mother's battle with breast cancer, I have found this book to be a comfort.
Amazon.com offers readers an exclusive peek at Lisa's Story, with 10 pages of excerpts to download.
These titles may be ordered from NLP at Box 538, Oskaloosa, Iowa 52577. Don't forget to include $3 S&H with each order. Music Treasures also offers these books for sale; visit their online store to purchase.
Football Fields Are For Band Practice!, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $4.95.
A Sunday Concert, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $4.95.
Harry L. Dinkle Live at Carnegie Hall, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $4.95.
Attack of the Band Moms, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $6.95.
Will the Ushers Please Lock the Doors, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $4.95.
Gone With the Woodwinds, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $9.95
I Never Promised You a Rose Parade, by Tom Batiuk. NLP Marketing, $4.95.
Search EBay.com for Funky books!
Funky Winkerbean, by Tom Batiuk. Xerox Education Publications, 1973.
No ISBN given. The cover price is 75 cents.
View the cover (thanks to Nicolas Venjean for providing it). The cover illustration is a two-panel cartoon. In panel 1, Funky tells a blonde, "Hi! My name's Funky!" In panel 2, the girl replies, "Why don't you tell me what it is and let me decide that for myself!"
Funky Winkerbean: Play it Again, Funky! , by Tom Batiuk. Tempo Books (Grosset and Dunlap), New York, 1975.
ISBN: 0-448-07442-7. Price: 95 cents. The cover illustration is a single panel in which the computer tells a crestfallen Funky, "I'm sorry! But according to our records, you don't exist!"
Funky Winkerbean: Yearbook, by Tom Batiuk. Tempo Books (Grosset and Dunlap), New York, 1980. ISBN: 0-448-17161-9. Price: $1.25.
In the upper right-hand corner of the cover, "#3" appears, implying that this is the third Funky Winkerbean collection from the publisher. The front and back covers each show a square array of nine different characters, a la yearbook pictures.
Funky Winkerbean : You Know You've Got Trouble When Your Mascot is a Scapegoat, by Tom Batiuk. Tempo Books (Grosset and Dunlap).
A collection of daily strips, features Westview High's first ever homecoming game win and the strip series of Carl Sagan speaking at Crazy Harry's Star Trek convention. Cover is red and features Les, Funky, Harry Dinkle, and the Westview Scapegoat.
A Pizza Pilgrim's Progress, by Tom Batiuk, 1990.
This title may be available for $9.95 (price includes S&H) from Pizza Pro Shop, P.O. Box 1347, 137 E. Market St., New Albany, IN, 47150. This collection is reportedly one of nothing but pizza related strips.
Thanks to Jim Hawkins for the following info:
Tempo Books, 0-446-14371-2. $0.95, No publication date but the copyrights are 1974,1975,1976,1977.
The cover is primarily red and yellow, an upper red band carrying the title on the front and the blurb on the back, a much narrower lower red band with author's name, and a central yellow band carrying a wraparound colour cartoon:
A line of students (right to left: Funky, Les, Junebug, Crazy, Bull, somebody in bib overalls, Holly) facing Fred, seated extreme right at a desk with a 'Registration' sign. Fred is saying "All we have left are two study halls and a lunch!"
The blurb is: Funky Winkerbean and company are back! From the world's greatest band director, to a computer that plays Star-Trek! And they're all waiting to tickle your funkybone!
Underneath: TEMPO BOOKS GROSSET & DUNLAP, Inc., Publishers, New York, N.Y. 10010 A FILMWAYS COMPANY
Any further information on the above books is appreciated. E-mail.
Safe Return Home: An Inspirational Book for Caregivers of Alzheimer's by Batiuk and Ayers
Andrews McMeel, 0836269136, $12.95
Where Funky has tackled serious topics, Crankshaft too has similar moments. In the past few years, the strip revisited the tragedy of the Kent State riots and touched upon drug abuse and teen pregnancy. Currently Crankshaft features a character stricken with Alzheimer's Disease, and while the disease is hardly a laughing matter (I know this personally, having a relative with the illness), Batiuk and Ayers have dealt with the subject with grace.
I've Still Got It! A Crankshaft Collection by Batiuk and Ayers
Andrews McMeel, 0836204190, $9.95
This collection of Crankshaft strips was published in 1995. I do not have this book myself, so I cannot comment on its content, but would hazard a guess that Ed's love of baseball is somehow involved.
Any further information on this book is appreciated.
The availability on the following is unknown:
Crankshaft, by Tom Batiuk & Chuck Ayers. Andrews & McMeel, ISBN 0-8362-1889-2, 1992
Crankshaft...and one slice with anchovies! by Tom Batiuk & Chuck Ayers. Andrews & McMeel, ISBN 0-8362-1707-1, 1993
Believe it or not, there is at least one John Darling book floating around somewhere. The information is below, anything further is appreciated.
John Darling : Take One, by Tom Armstrong and Tom Batiuk. Tempo Books, a Grosset & Dunlap imprint, ISBN 0-448-17167-8, copyright 1979, 1980.
Special thanks to the following:
...to Gwillim Law for providing information on some of the out-of-print books
...to the rec.arts.comics.strips "Titles Of Comics Collections FAQ" for information on some books
...to "Crash for information on the NLP books