Aaron McGruder: Steve Grayson/WireImage.com
Matthew Flamm
April 01, 2002 AT 05:00 AM EST

”The Boondocks,” the syndicated comic strip that’s a little like an African-American ”Doonesbury,” is headed for bigger things: Crown editor Chris Jackson has just signed the strip’s 27-year-old creator, Aaron McGruder, to a four-book deal.

The house plans to publish ”The Boondocks Omnibus” a year from this fall, followed by ”Huey’s Hate Book” (an illustrated collection of all the things the title character can’t stand); a graphic novel, ”Fight the Power,” which McGruder is working to develop into a film with Reginald Hudlin (”The Ladies Man”); and an essay collection, ”Profits of Rage.” ”We’re catching him at just the right time,” says Crown editorial director Steve Ross. ”[H]e’s maintained his position as a voice of dissent even at a time when other voices have quieted.”

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