Last month Pearls Before Swine cartoonist and Timmy Failure author Stephan Pastis embarked on an ambitious book tour consisting of 20 public events and 28 school visits, which took place across 27 days. The tour was in support of his new book for middle graders, Looking Up (Aladdin), an illustrated novel about loneliness and grief, and a girl striving to save her town from gentrification by hipsters. Nearly 4,500 people attended the month-long series of events, which included a presentation about the book, a drawing demonstration, and audience q&as. During each signing, Pastis personalized books and drew the book’s protagonist, Saint, as well as his Pearls Before Swine characters for fans. In Akron, Oh., the signing line at Barnes & Noble lasted four hours.

Pastis spread the word about his tour in a unique way: with an announcement in his Pearls Before Swine comic strip, which is syndicated in 778 newspapers nationwide. In the strip, Pastis appeared as a cartoon version of himself and listed all of the cities that he would be visiting. In addition, Pearls Before Swine ran custom strips the week before each event in their respective regional newspapers to remind readers about them, and listed the date, time, and location of each event. Here we present a selection of photos from the tour.

On October 10, Pastis presented to students during a school visit in Danville, Calif., sponsored by Rakestraw Books. Photo: Courtesy Rakestraw Books.

In an October 11 appearance at The Bookmark Shoppe in Brooklyn, N.Y., Stephan Pastis chatted with a young fan. Photo: Bryan Sargent.

Pastis with Simon & Schuster staffers (from l.): Kara Sargent, Alex Kelleher-Nagorski, Anna Jarzab, Alissa Rashid, and Emily Ritter at The Bookmark Shoppe. Photo: Sargent.

Drawing some of his well-known characters at The Book Stall in Winnetka, Ill., on October 12. Photo: Courtesy The Book Stall.

Meeting a Toledo TV anchor and his family at the Detroit Public Library on October 14, at an event organized by Source Booksellers. Photo: Courtesy Stephan Pastis.

Addressing the crowd at Barnes & Noble Akron on October 15. Photo: Courtesy Barnes & Noble.

Signing Looking Up at the Takoma Park Community Center in Takoma Park, Md., on October 16, during an appearance arranged in partnership with Politics and Prose. Photo: Bruce Guthrie.

Talking to attendees at the Takoma Park Community Center. Photo: Guthrie.

Doing a drawing demonstration during a school visit in Winter Park, Fla., on October 17, in partnership with Writer’s Block Bookstore. Photo: Courtesy Writer’s Block.

Pastis signing books at the Atlanta-Fulton Central Library on October 19, arranged by Brave + Kind Bookshop. Photo: Courtesy Brave + Kind Bookshop.

A student displaying one of Pastis’s drawings from his school visit in Decatur, Ga. Photo: Courtesy Brave + Kind Bookshop.

Posing with students during a school visit on October 20 in St. Louis, Mo. Photo: Courtesy Left Bank Books.

Presenting Looking Up on October 21 at novel., a bookstore in Memphis. Photo: Courtesy novel.

Posing with local drag queens on October 22 at Garden District Book Shop in New Orleans. Photo: Courtesy Pastis.

Answering questions during a school visit on October 23 in Houston. Photo: Courtesy Blue Willow Bookshop.

Signing books with a little canine assistance. Photo: Courtesy Blue Willow Bookshop.

A school visit in Denver on October 25. Photo: Courtesy The Bookies.

An SRO crowd at Barnes & Noble Roseville in Roseville, Calif., on October 28. Photo: Courtesy Barnes & Noble.

Powell’s Books at Cedar Hills Crossing hosted an October 29 visit from Pastis. Photo: Courtesy Powell’s Books.

A presentation at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park, Wash., on October 30. Photo: Courtesy Third Place Books.