Here's what I got:
Before Mickey by Donald Crafton
Cartoon Modern by Amid Amidi
Created and Produced by Total Television Productions by Mark Arnold
I Say, I Say... Son! by Robert McKimson, Jr.
Looney Tunes: The Ultimate Visual Guide by Jerry Beck
Pink Panther: Ultimate Visual Guide by Jerry Beck
Pinnochio: The Making of the Disney Epic by J.B. Kaufman
The 50 Greatest Cartoons by Jerry Beck
The 100 Greatest Looney Tunes Cartoons by Jerry Beck
The Animated Film Encyclopedia by Graham Webb
The Art of Jay Ward Productions by Darrell Van Citters
The Art of Kubo and The Two Strings by Emily Haynes
The Cartoon Music Book by Daniel Goldmark
The Moose That Roared by Keith Scott
The SpongeBob SquarePants Experience by Jerry Beck
Think Pink!: The DePatie Freleng Story by Mark Arnold
Tunes for Toons by Daniel Goldmark
When Magoo Flew by Adam Abraham

So, which books do you guys and girls think I should get?

"With all respect to the great mousetrap."- Popeye, "The Spinach Overture" (1935)
Disney Animation: The Illusion of Life . One of the best books on classics Disney animation written by two of the Nine Old Men. It's regularly $60 but Amazon currently has it discounted to $32.
The Art Of Walt Disney by Christopher Finch

The Enchanted World Of Rankin/Bass 20th Anniversary edition By Rick Goldschmidt (not on Amazon)

The Fleischer Story by Leslie Cabarga (out of print) (although some info in this has been debunked)

The Hanna Barbera Treasury by Jerry Beck
PopKorn Kat
I haven't finished reading most of these, but some books I have that others haven't listed yet:
  • Walt Disney's Silly Symphonies by Russell Merritt and J.B. Kaufman. The book was recently revised and republished, so now's a good time to get it.
  • Walt in Wonderland by the same authors as the above. It covers Disney's silent-era animation (Alice Comedies, Oswald).
  • Felix: The Twisted Tale of the World's Most Famous Cat by John Canemaker
  • The Walter Lantz Story by Joe Adamson

Of Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons by Leonard Maltin
Looney Tunes and Merrie Melodies: A Complete Guise to the Warner Bros. Cartoons by Jerry Beck and Will Friedwald

Both books are out of print, but if you can find them they're great references.

I would also recommend "Hollywood Cartoons: American Animation in Its Golden Age" by Michael Barrier. His book can be infuriating because it has a teleological bent toward Character Animation, as perfected by Disney, and thus shortchanges the surrealism of the Flesichers, but Barrier is unrivaled in showing the greatness of what he likes, and has written the most intelligent critical survey of classic cartoons around.
Bobby Bickert
Originally Posted by: Hutch 

Of Mice and Magic: A History of American Animated Cartoons by Leonard Maltin

I can't believe no one mentioned this book until the fifth post in this thread. I checked Of Mice and Magic out of the library in 1984 when I was in high school. I bought my own copy (the softcover edition) new in 1986. It is "well-loved". (But I never got the revised edition from 1987, though the only chapters that were updated were the ones about Disney, WB and "the rest of the story", plus one new image was added to the Terrytoons chapter. If only Leonard Martin had waited about 3 years to update it...)

I'd also recommend The Encyclopedia of Cartoon Superstars by Jim Korkis and John Cawley, which I bought new in 1992.

P.S. Good sources for used books are www.abebooks.com , www.biblio.com  and www.alibris.com . All 3 of them are basically "bulletin boards" for used book stores.

Bobby Bickert
G. Michael Dobbs' long-in-the-works history of the Fleischer Studio is finally finished. But it's so long that it's going to be made up of more than one volume! So far the first volume, Made of Pen and Ink: Fleischer Studios, The New York Years has been published. I first read about it in Animato! magazine in 1993. But it's been in the works even longer. G. Michael Dobbs interviewed Jack Mercer, who died in 1984. ("One of my greatest pleasures was interviewing Jack Mercer. He was a very nice man and he wasn't really aware of his large number of fans and his influence on animation.")

I found out about this book from a Facebook page called Books on Animation, which was recommended to me in an e-mail from Facebook. Contributers include Jerry Beck, Mark Arnold and Don Bluth. It's been around since 2011. I guess I'll have to work my way through the huge backlog of posts one post per day, like I'm doing with another Facebook page, The Big Guy Who Hates Popeye.


EDIT: I just noticed today that the post about this book on the Books on Animation Facebook page is dated December 2, 2022!
Bobby Bickert
Another find from the Books on Animation Facebook page: Don Bluth has written an autobiography, Somewhere Out There: My Animated Life. It was published in July 2022.

Person favorites:

  • The Illusion of Life
  • Hollywood Cartoons
  • The Walter Lantz Story
  • Tex Avery: King of Cartoons
  • Bugs Bunny: 50 Years and Only One Grey Hare
  • Chuck Amuck
  • Nine Old Men (Canemaker)