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"See you next month -for the first Image Bone Issue- Bone #21!" - Jeff Smith

Bone Sourcebook is a single issue, limited print Bone comic. This comic does not contain a narrative story but instead contains various Bone related content including the likes of a timeline, a letter from Jeff Smith, character profiles and more. This comic was released to act as a follow-up to the announcement on May 5th, 1995 which stated that Bone would be transitioning from being published by Cartoon Books to being published by Image Comics.

This Bone comic was released between Bone 20 and Bone 21. This issue acts as the first Bone publication under Image Comics. It has no rereleases and has never been collected in collected editions. It however has seen some elements of it included in the Scholastic published Bone Handbook. It's original release date was November, 1995 under Image Comics. Jeff Smith was the main creator behind this work but it was a collective effort by various other creators including but not limited to Andries Mulder, Karen Root, Doug Griffith and David Reed.

Content Summary[]

The issue begins in the inside of the front cover with a table of contents breaking down the various creations in the issue as well as the various creators who worked on this issue. The content includes Letter From Jeff, Heroes and Villains Character Profiles, Pin Up, The Timeline: The Story So Far, Cartoon Books Staff Photo, Bone Checklist, What's Coming Up and lastly Bone's Shipping Schedule. The various creators who worked on this issue include Jeff Smith who is credited as the creator and cartoonist, Andries Mulder who created the heroes and villains profiles and the checklist, Karen Root who created the timeline and the layout, Doug Griffith who created the book design and David Reed who airbrushed the cover.

Following this section on the first page is the first section of the Letter From Jeff Smith which discusses in detail his work on Bone so far, the decision to go transition to Image Comics, the response he has gotten for going to Image Comics, the financial situation of Bone and Cartoon Books as a whole, why he likes Image Comics and other general questions he has received about Bone. Also on the first page is a shrunk down version of the original letter released on May 5th, 1995 about the decision to transition to Image Comics.

On page two and three the Heroes and Villains Character Profiles section begins. On these two pages the heroes section is displayed which includes the characters Fone Bone, The Great Red Dragon, Thorn, Phoney Bone, Smiley Bone, Lucius, Ted, and Grandma Ben. Along with the characters, various information about them is displayed including things like there Name, Powers and Abilities, History and a Quote. Some characters display more information like Height, Weight, Eyes, Hair Secret Identities, and Hide.

On Page four the Villains section of the Heroes and Villains Character Profiles section is displayed. The page includes the characters The Hooded One, The Lord of Locusts, Rat Creatures and Kingdok. Along with the characters, various information about them is displayed including things like there Name, Powers and Abilities, and their History.

Between page four and five is four pages which contain a pinup poster by Jim Lee. This poster is a collaboration poster picturing characters and locations of the WILDc.a.t.s comic with Fone Bone, Smiley Bone and Phoney Bone also dressed up like various WILDc.a.t.s characters.

On page five, six and seven is the Timeline. This timeline consists of all the major events that greatly impact the main Bone's storyline between issues 1 and 20. The information is displayed in textbooks with a comic attached to them. A few sections consist of only a comic and no descriptive text. Between the various boxes is a map of a road linking them all together. On this road and in the background various characters and decorations appear.

On page eight the Letter From Jeff Smith which began on the first page continues. In this part of the letter he discusses why he won't renumber the series, the changes in appearance on the cover, if any Bone crossovers would happen, the inclusion of ads which Image Cartoons is known for and lastly what will happen with Cartoon Books. He than tells the readers to look out for the next issue of Bone. Also on this page is a mini biography about Jeff Smith including major events in his life which includes a shortened version of the history of Bone and Cartoon Books. Lastly on this page is a photograph of the staff at Cartoon Books. The photo includes Andries Mulder, Vijaya Iyer, Jeff Smith and Karen Root. Also on this picture are the Bone cousins.

On the inside of the back cover is a description of the next two issues to be published and what to expect from them, these issues being Bone 21 and a reissue of Bone 1. Below this is a Bone Checklist which includes all the comics books, Bone pins, magazine covers, collected editions, Bone trading cards, giveaways, highly collectible, convention special and Disney adventures released up to this point.

On the back cover is the future shipping schedule of Bone issues and reissues up until August of 1996.

Publication history[]

Background & Development[]

This issue of Bone was developed by Jeff Smith among various other creators prior to November, 1995 as a limited edition, non-narrative Bone issue.

Publication, Collected Editions and Reprints[]

Over the course of it's lifetime Bone Sourcebook has seen no reprints and has not been included in any collected editions. Despite this the content of Bone Sourcebook went on to greatly inspire and contribute to the Scholastic published Bone book titled Bone Handbook which released almost 15 years after Bone Sourcebook's publication.



The reception of this issue was generally positive as it explained the decision to change to Image Comics and included various new Bone content.


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Trivia & Notes[]

  • This comic was created to help new readers learn more after the transition to Image Comics
  • This issue helped inspire and create the Bone Handbook
  • This issue contains a pinup poster that depicts Bone and WILDc.a.t.s characters side-by-side
  • This issue was only printed once
  • This issue was never collected in any collected editions
  • This issues name is depicted as Bone Sourcebook on the cover while being referenced to as Bone Sourcebook #1 and Bone Sourcebook throughout the issue itself
  • This issue contains some exclusive information about the characters Lucius, Gran'ma Ben, Thorn, The Great Red Dragon and Kingdok
  • This issue refers to The Great Red Dragon as The Great Red Dragon, The Red Dragon and The Dragon

Links and References[]

A majority of printing information came from and physical copies of this issue of Bone as well as the Bone Handbook. Any additional information came from publicly accessible website including but not limited to Grand Comics Database,, and