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Fables Vol. 3: Storybook Love (Fables (Graphic Novels)) Paperback – May 1, 2004

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Fables Vol. 3: Storybook Love (Fables (Graphic Novels)) + Fables Vol. 2: Animal Farm (Fables (Graphic Novels)) + Fables Vol. 1: Legends in Exile (New Edition) (Fables (Graphic Novels))
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Product Details

  • Series: Fables (Graphic Novels) (Book 3)
  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Vertigo (May 1, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 140120256X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1401202569
  • Product Dimensions: 10.4 x 6.7 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (52 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,416 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

One of the stories in this new collection is appropriately titled "Into the Woods." Like Stephen Sondheim's musical, Willingham's series presents figures from childhood fairytales contending with the problems of adult life. Snow White, Briar Rose (aka Sleeping Beauty), Prince Charming, Little Boy Blue and Goldilocks all appear, as does a trickster named Jack. So does the Big Bad Wolf, who is inescapably reminiscent of Marvel's Wolverine. Even Gulliver's Lilliputians turn up, as do talking animals. This volume collects issues 11 through 18, and, as with many contemporary comics, it will be difficult for readers who haven't started with the first issue to get their bearings. The fairytale characters comprise a community of immortals known as "Fables," who now hide in plain sight from the mundane normal people (known as "mundys," they're much like J.K. Rowling's muggles) in a section of New York City called Fabletown. The stories are of two sorts. Two stand-alone tales take place in past centuries and have a genuine fairytale feel and period charm. The others, set in the present, are gritty, with dysfunctional relationships, blackmail and murder attempts. Take the "mature audiences" advisory seriously: this is a book in which an adult Goldilocks can be seen naked or covered with blood. Despite its darker elements, Fables features wit and comedy; Willingham can even make scenes simultaneously farcical and horrific. The art ranges from the illustrative to cartoony, and its variety mirrors the stories' many moods.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

The third collection of Fables, the Sandman spin-off about fairy-tale characters exiled in New York, contains four stories. The longest, "Storybook Love," is the most satisfying, but the others have their fairy-tale-like (i.e., grisly) charms. Revealing that the Jack of beanstalk fame and the Jack of the eponymous tall tales are identical, "Bag o' Bones" spins a Civil War yarn in which Jack detains the Grim Reaper, so that no one can die. In "a two-part caper" (all that's given in the way of a title), the Fables community puts Briar Rose, aka the Sleeping Beauty, back on slumberous hold to prevent exposure by a scandal-rag journalist. In "Barleycorn Bride," Bigby Wolf relays some of the Fables' early history in America to explain why 18-year-old Lilliputian boys try to steal magic barleycorns from a jar at the Fables' Manhattan headquarters. The long story concerns a plot to seize Fables leadership by Bluebeard and Goldilocks; it includes some Fables mainstays' apparent demises and begs for future development. Deucedly cleverly written, yeomanly drawn. Ray Olson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

More About the Author

Bill Willingham never fought a desperate and losing battle in a good cause, never contributed to society in a meaningful way, and hasn't lived a life of adventure, but he's had a few moments of near adventure. At some point in his life Bill learned how to get paid for telling scurrilous lies to good people, and he's been doing it ever since. He lives in the wild and frosty woods of Minnesota.

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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I'm excited to read the next trade!!
S. Penrose
Storybook Love brings the Bigby Wolf-Snow White story arc to a crisis, while Bluebeard and Goldilocks connive to take over Fabletown.
Christina Paige
All of the stories are engaging and interesting.
K. Eckert

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Joshua Koppel on November 2, 2004
Format: Paperback
Unlike in the first two volumes of Fables, there is no single story arc in this one. Instead we get four tales of different lengths that help fill in the Fables world.

In "Bag o' Bones" Jack the Giant Killer has allied with the South in the Civil War. Once fortunes turn against the South, Jack winds up having adventures involving the Devil, Death, and a beautiful cursed Southern Belle.

In "a Two-Part Caper" a reporter contacts Bigby to let him know that he knows his secret. He has discovered the colony of immortals and is convinced that they are vampires. Bigby, with the help of Sleeping Beauty, Bluebeard, the Frog Prince, Prince Charming and Boy Blue, makes a late night raid to ensure their secret is kept.

In "Storybook Love", the longest story in the collection, Bigby and Snow become targets and are removed from Fabletown, Prince Charming squares off against Bluebeard, a villain returns, unforseen repercussions arise, and Charming decides to look into running for mayor.

Bigby tells The Frog Prince the story of "Barleycorn Bride" wherein John Barleycorn must help the rest of the refugee Lilliputians find brides their own size.

The tales in this volume are well-done. The first and last help fill in some of the history while the middle two move the modern story along very nicely. Another very entertaining read.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Andrew on April 3, 2006
Format: Paperback
In the third volume of Bill Willingham's great Fables, we are treated to multiple storyarcs. Two one-shots, a two part caper, and a four part revenge story make up the plotlines of Storybook Love, which is the best volume yet.

Starting with Bag of Bones, we see some things that Jack of the Tales has done to earn his trickster reputation. In an attempt to get rich, he intended to marry a southern belle and would win her over by joining the Confederates in the Civil War. Though, as we all know, the war didn't turn out the way he expected it to. After the war, he ran into a (possibly demonic) man whom he bamboozled in a card game. Using a magic sack won from the man, Jack went as far as to prevent death, with some rather, um, graphic results.

In the caper story, we are introduced to Briar Rose, popularly known as Sleeping Beauty, who is still victim to the curse whenever she gets a pricked finger. When a reporter claims that he has figured out the fables' secret (he believes them to be vampires), he warns Sheriff Bigby Wolf that he is going to publish and unless they don't want any input, he had better give him an interview. Wolf refuses, and plans a scheme to discredit the journalist. Using Boy Blue, Jack, Bluebeard, Prince Charming, and Briar Rose, they knock out the entire building, using Briar Rose's curse, and proceed with their plan. The plan is nothing one would ever see in a storybook; it involves blackmail and murder threats. Wolf is ruthless to the man, and it ends with a rogue fable taking care of things his own way.

Storybook Love is somewhat of a followup to Animal Farm.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By G. M. Elwell on May 13, 2004
Format: Paperback
Sometimes, authors don't know what they have. I'm sure the creators of classic fables like Little Red Riding Hood and Snow white never thought the villain of one and the protagonist of the other would ever find love, but author Bill Willingham finds a way to make it work in this intelligent and beautifully illustrated story arc.
The fables, exiled from their home world, live in Manhattan and exist as a fractured community, faced with the mundane (they call normal human Mundys) and the fantastical (Beauty's Beast turning beastial in appearance whenever she's mad at him), all under the watchful and creative eye of Willingham.
Reading this (or the other two excellent collections), one gets the feeling Willingham has done a lot of research into the original fables and not the Disneyized versions we have come to know. Literary buffs, academics, those who like a good laugh and anyone who wanted to know what happened after they lived happily ever after should pick this up. Beware, however, that this is not for children. Let them grow up with Disney and they'll be very entertained when they're old enough to read this.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By David on January 21, 2006
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I liked the first two volumes of "Fables," but felt some of the characterization was a bit uneven as Willingham developed his characters and the world of Fabletown. In this volume, there is one sequence that advances the main story arc and further develops the characters of Snow White, Bigby Wolf, and Prince Charming, and three other stories which stand on their own. I felt the characters were all much more real in this volume, and the setting more solid.

The main story (which advances the series' overall plot) features the return of Goldilocks, whose appearance always seems to guarantee a bloodbath, and develops the relationship between Snow White and Bigby Wolf. Bigby becomes a much more interesting character in this story, starting to become more than just a "Wolverine" knockoff. Prince Charming also takes a minor but significant role in this story, and surprisingly, also becomes much more interesting, as we see that he can be more than just a manipulative cad.

One of the secondary stories is about a muckraking journalist who discovers the Fables' secret and threatens to expose them. It introduces Briar Rose, aka "Sleeping Beauty," and also stars Bigby Wolf, Prince Charming, and Bluebeard.

The other two secondary stories are more traditional fairy tales that have nothing to do with the main story arc, but flesh out the characters and world of the Fables. One is set during the Civil War and stars Jack of the Tales as his usual scoundrel self. The other tells of how the Lilliputians came to our world and joined the other Fables on The Farm.
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