The Encyclopedia of Marx Action Figures - ***1/2 (softcover)
This is THE book on Marx action figures, bar none. It has terrific
photos, showing all the standard figures and many of the variations on the
Best of the West figures, the Knights and Vikings, the Gabriel Lone Ranger
line, the Ready Gang series, the Safari Adventure series and even the
Archies. Each figure is accompanied by manufacture dates, a listing
of accessories (crucial to the Marx collector!), and terrific descriptive
text, explaining variations and oddities.
There are also prices included, but I'm not much of a fan of price
guides. I feel the book would have been better off without the
addition of the ball park pricing, but some people find great value in
As I said, the photos are very useful, but I think that shooting with
better light would have reduced the amount of shadows in some of the
pictures. But this is a minor complaint, and you'll see some items
pictured in this book that are extremely rare.
If you love the Marx line like I do, then I can't recommend this book
enough. Mr. Heaton has done an excellent job providing useful,
informative information along with well done photos. The first
section of the book provides a great over view of the history of Marx and
the figures, providing the collector with the background information that
is so often missing in the average price guide. Obviously, Mr.
Heaton loves the toys as much as the rest of us, and it's refreshing to
If I have one complaint, it's that the book was done in soft cover - I
suspect that repeated use will cause problems with the spine over time.
||The Collectible G.I. Joe - ****
Where the Heaton book is perfect for Marx collectors, the DePriest book is
perfect for the collector of vintage Joe. Following the line from
year to year, and including exceptional pictures of the figures and
vehicles in action, Mr. DePriest provides an entertaining yet informative
The real beauty of this book is in the photos. While the text
does a nice job of providing information, it's the pictures that bring out
the real beauty of Joe. With great care, the figures are posed
within appropriate terrain, and the vehicles are shown off in all their
glory. I'm very impressed with the quality of the figures used in
the photos - and there are some awfully rare items!
This book also features a price guide, but it is included in the
back. While I prefer this, since it makes it less obtrusive, this
one is a bit hard to follow. Page numbers for pictured figures would
have been helpful.
If you have fond memories of your childhood days, playing with your
favorite Joe, then I highly recommend picking up this book. I warn
you though - this book could turn you into a Joe collector!
Both of these books are available on line at www.amazon.com
and www.bn.com. The Joe book is also
available at most book stores, but I've only seen the Marx book on line so
far. Both books retail for right around $20. You can also
purchase Mr. DePriest's book directly from him at http://members.aol.com/gijoebook
And by the way, neither the authors nor publishers gave permission for
me to use these images, so hopefully they won't yell at me :-)