Completion Date: January, 2009
Publication Date: November 1, 2004
Reason for Reading: Next book in the Fables series. Graphic Novel Challenge.
Bill Willingham's runaway hit series FABLES continues its success in this fourth trade paperback, collecting issues #19-21 and #23-27 (issue #22 will appear in a future collection) and featuring the rise of a new threat to Fabletown. Also included is the Prestige Format Special Fables: The Last Castle. When Little Red Riding Hood suddenly walks through the gate between this world and the lost Fable Homelands, she's welcomed as a miraculous survivor by nearly everyone - everyone except her old nemesis, Bigby Wolf, who smells spying and subversion more than survival. But will he be able to prove his case before disaster strikes? And how will it all affect Prince Charming's upstart campaign to become the new mayor of Fabletown?This book is a bit thicker than the ones that came before it. That is probably because a lot happens in the pages of this book! The story opens with Boy Blue. He has been a main character in the series since the beginning, but we don't really get to know him until this story. Today, he tells the story of how he escaped to our world a century ago. He was a member of the army that was battling the Adversary and his co-horts, but the leader of the Fables insisted that Boy Blue wait until the battle was over and then join the last ship to safety. Bluebeard was the captain and that was the last time that anyone successfully moved between the two worlds. Boy Blue also tells the story of his ill-fated love for Red Riding Hood. This all leads up to the arrival of Red Riding Hood who says that she has been a hostage of the Adversary for all these years, but now suddenly has escaped and successfully made it to safety. Bigby Wolf is automatically suspicious.
There is a lot going on in this book. The last group of Fables to make it to Fabletown celebrate the loss of those that were left behind. Prince Charming is running against King Cole to become the next mayor of Fabletown. King Cole has been in power for centuries and never had anyone run against him, but Prince Charming is always scheming for power. If he wins, Beauty will take over Snow White's job and Beast will take over Bigby's. Charming is positive that those two will not want to stay in power when he assumes it. Snow White is moving closer to her due date, so the events that will happen she has to watch from the side lines. She does her job well, though. This is the story that will test whether or not the characters are really safe in Fabletown.
Another fantastic addition to the series! This one is a little darker than the previous installments, but there is a lot of plot development, and we know that the adversary was going to have to eventually become a character. Judging by the events of this story, it won't be long before that is reality. I really hope people take a chance on this series and give it a read! It is wonderful!