Bloom County Library Vol. 1: 1980-1981 – iPad App Review

I’ve literally been reading Bloom County almost all of my life. As soon as I discovered the “funny pages,” I’d steal the comic section of dad’s newspaper and tuck away somewhere to read every single strip. When I was really little, I hated comics like Bloom County and Sally Fourth because they bored me. I didn’t understand the humor.

However, I read every single panel anyway because it was a comic. It didn’t matter if I was unable to comprehend political discourse. It was a comic and needed to be read. I eventually came around. As I grew older, the political humor made more sense and now I love reading about Milo, Opus, and Cutter John.

The Bloom County Library Vol. 1 app by IDW Publishing is a collection of the first two years of the comic strip’s existence. Beginning on Dec. 8, 18980 we are introduced to Milo and his grown up vocabulary that would later be the influence of young characters with a strong sense of irony and witticism (read: Family Guy, Gilmore Girls, etc.).


Each page of this digital book shows the next day’s strip. Instead of filling a page with multiple panels, the design allows readers to go back to what it would have been like reading it from the newspaper. You could even choose to read only one strip per day if you like. Although, once you start reading, it will be hard to stop.

Some pages include personal snippets of information from the comic’s creator, Berkeley Breathed. For example, one page reads, “Milo’s name came from the hero of The Phantom Tollbooth. The first book I ever loved. –BB” Each quote sheds a little light on the history and creation of the comic.


Considering this book includes literally hundreds of pages of comics, the price is unbelievably low. Print versions of the first volume of the Bloom County Library sell for upwards of $25 online. This app is a fraction of the cost and doesn’t take up any space on your bookshelf.


What I liked: The pinch-to-zoom feature makes it easy to study the details. The quotes from Berkeley Breathed make this app even more interesting to read

What I didn’t like: The user interface is different than most books. There is no menu and if you want to skip to another page, you have to tap the “see all” tab. You can’t see any detail in that section and there are no page numbers. You can’t bookmark anything.

To buy or not to buy: If you are a fan of Bloom County and want to relive the decade of indulgence. Buy this collection. The image quality is decent enough and the price is great.

About Lory: Writer of all things app related, traveler of the space-time continuum, baker of really great cookies. Follow me @appaholik

  • Carmen Johnson

    thanks this