It's a bird! It's a plane! It's ... Howard Schultz, the CEO of Starbucks?
So This Exists: A Comic Book About Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz (Seriously)
Yep. This week's Media Guy Media Pick -- and reader giveaway -- is "Howard Schultz: The Man Behind Starbucks," a comic book written by C.W. Cooke, drawn by Angel Bernuy and with a cover by Conan Momchilov. It was just released in a print edition by Bluewater Productions, a Vancouver, Wash.-based publisher of comic books, young-adult books and graphic novels.
If you're picturing a tights-wearing, crime-fighting Schultz, um, sorry. This is actually a pretty straightforward telling of how the marketing director for a little Seattle coffee-bean retailer called Starbucks ended up rethinking the whole operation and taking it global, in the process becoming a billionaire and business-world icon. It's a brisk 32 pages that you can read in about five minutes if you don't stare at the drawings too long. I'm giving away three copies -- see below -- and if you win one, you should think about being nice and regifting it to your favorite barista as an ironic gift, or to the nearest ambitious, business-minded kid in your life (maybe Alex P. Keaton is your nephew?) as a serious gift.
I asked the head of Bluewater, Darren G. Davis, why he published this thing, and he told me, "After reading 'Onward: How Starbucks Fought for Its Life without Losing Its Soul,' by Howard Schultz, I thought he would be a great subject for a comic book. I love telling stories of people who are inspirational like Schultz and have a great backstory." And Bluewater, Davis points out, has a history of publishing biographical comic books, including one about Steve Jobs that was a best-seller on Amazon a couple years back.
THE FINE PRINT: To enter the random drawing in this informal Media Guy Media Giveaway, send me an email with "Howard Schultz comic book" in the subject line. Entering more than once will not increase your odds. You have until March 15, 2013 to enter (the cut-off is the end of the day at 12 midnight ET). You must be 18 or older and have a valid U.S. mailing address.
Simon Dumenco is the "Media Guy" columnist for Advertising Age. You can follow him on Twitter @simondumenco.