Saturday, January 17, 2009

Fables - Volume 3: Storybook Love by Bill Willingham

Books Completed: 14
Completion Date: January, 2009
Pages: 192
Publication Date: May 1, 2004

Reason for Reading: The third book in the Fables series. Other two books are reviewed here and here. Graphic Novels Challenge.
FABLES: STORYBOOK LOVE is a captivating tale of romance and adventure. After being hunted and hounded by a savage being called the Adversary, the legendary characters of fables and fairytales were forced to relocate to a magical high-rise in Manhattan. Living in peaceful disharmony for centuries, the literary figures have forged a dysfunctional existence of tentative alliances and allegiances. But when Snow White and the Big Bad Wolf begin an improbable romance, Bluebeard enacts a devious plan to destroy his rivals. Now as Goldilocks mercilessly stalks the two lovers in the Cascade Mountains, Prince Charming confronts Bluebeard in a deadly duel within the confines of the Fables’ New York condominium.
Enter Fables fangirl. I have no idea why I love this series so much, but I do! I am always attracted to fairy tale retellings, but this one I could easily sit down and read the entire series one right after another! I can't do that, though, because I don't own the entire series (yet) and because if I read them all now, then I don't have anything left for later!

This collection begins with an adaption of an American Folktale. The story is called "Bag O' Bones". In this story, Jack (as in Jack and the Beanstalk or Jack the Giant Killer) is placed in the American Civil West. I really enjoyed this story. The tricks that are played, Jack finding out that he might not always have the best schemes (even when he thinks he does), and the resulting ending made a very entertaining story. It was a familiar story, I think I have heard the story it was based on before, but Willingham makes his own changes to suit his characters. It was great!

This story moves into a great scene with Briar Rose (of Sleeping Beauty fame) and Bigby Wolf (of Three Little Pigs fame). I am going to be very honest. Sleeping Beauty has always been my least favourite fairy tale! I have read a few adaptions that were good, but generally I am not a big fan. That being said, Briar Rose does work well in this two-part story, and I think she will make a good addition to the cast. Just think about it. Does her finger-pricking fate stop in this New World. All I will say is that when a human threatens to expose the Fable community, Briar Rose, as well as others, play a very interesting role. Bigby Wolf is at the head of the game again, of course!

Then, the story moves into the 'main' story. The others do work inside the larger story, but this is the story where loose ends from Animal Farm are cleared up and new problems present themselves. Bigby and Snow White begin to become a bit more friendly, a situation that is used to almost bring their downfall. Goldilocks, the gun-totting villian from the previous book makes an appearance. Will it be her last, or will she succeed this time. You will have to read to find out! Bluebeard begins to show that he has not exactly left his evil ways behind him, but instead of killing his helpless wives he has moved on to much more sophisticated crimes. Prince Charming, though, is not an innocent bystander and he might show that he is not exactly as clueless as he sometimes looks!

The book ends with Lilliputians. For those that haven't had the pleasure, Lilliputians are from Gulliver's Travels. I had the pleasure to read that in university, and I was not a huge fan, but I do like the way that Willingham writes them into the story. Bigby Wolf is telling the tale. It is a story of how the Lilliputians escaped into the New World, but only men. This, obviously, causes some problems. The story recaps how they remedy the situation.

The art is fantastic in this book! The way I have been reading this series is I read the whole way through, and then I go back and spend some time with the pictures. I also enjoy showing pictures to people that happen to be nearby at the time and reading out interesting passages! I think most people know that I love this series by now... If you haven't read it, I do strongly recommend it!


  1. OK, I was going to wait until I'd finished reading Rick Geary's GNs, but I can't stand it anymore! I'm putting a request in for the first one in this series.

  2. I hope you enjoy the series, Nicola! They really are good. :)

  3. I can't exactly explain why I love it so much either...I just do!

    My current book is going slowly, so I think it's time for a Fables detour :P

  4. Exactly like me! I think I will be reading more Fables later tonight. After I finish reading sci-fi stories, anyway.

  5. This sounds like a fun book - art & story. Do you think it's a series that should be read in order?

  6. Iliana: I am not sure. I would probably read it in order, but you can probably figure out what is going on if you don't.

  7. I'll have to check out this series. It sounds really interesting.

    I left an award for you on my blog.

  8. Chris: It's a good series and thanks! I will be over to check it out!

  9. I just know I'd love these but my library has no plans to get them so far :(

  10. I can get four random ones from my library, and then the rest would have to be through ILL


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