Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Fables, Vol 10: The Good Prince by Bill Willingham

Before I get started on this review, I will mention that this is volume 10 in the Fables series. I am pretty sure I have managed to keep it spoiler free but at 10 books in, there may well be something that slipped through so

**************SPOILER WARNING**************

I am so glad that this collection was pretty much all about the Flycatcher. The overall story did move forward and there were some other interludes but mostly this was the story of Fly's transformation from secondary character, and in some ways comedic relief, to a character with a full and fulfilling storyline - a transformation which was enabled by the fact that we learnt his back story in the 1001 Nights collection which I read a couple of months ago.

With Sir Lancelot's help, the Flycatcher is transformed from humble janitor to gallant prince and he goes off in search of his people. His search takes him away from Fabletown down into the Well where most fables are banished to as punishment or when they die. Using a special magic, he is able to give the ghosts new forms which will stay in place unless they get too far away from him. Fly, or perhaps I should call him Prince Ambrose now, leads his new followers across the desert at great risk to himself, until he gets back to his own homeland, which will henceforth be known as Haven.

As the book progresses, we see that the development and strengthening of Haven is part of a grander plan which enables the forces of the dreaded Adversary to be weakened in anticipation of a future battle. There was one particular aspect of this weakening that I liked - the fate of the wooden soldiers.

I found the revival of characters that were previous gone as ... interesting. As soon as two of them were introduced my reaction was uh-oh, with good cause, and I can't help but think that these two will still manage to cause some havoc in future episodes. There were other more welcome returns as well.

In terms of the total storyline arc for the series, this felt like quite a transitional book, once again getting all the pieces lined up for when the main battle finally happens. I do hope that is soon because this build up has been happening for quite some time now. I also wonder what happens when the Adversary is defeated once and for all. Will there be another big build up to conflict against another enemy or will the focus change? This issue did also introduce, or reinforce, questions that will need to be answered over the coming issues. Questions like exactly what is Frau Totenkinder up to. I guess I will just have to keep reading to find out.

In terms of the other stories in this collection while I loved the small story that revolved around Snow and Bigby (sigh!) and their brood of kids, the illustrations on that one threw me for a bit, particularly in the portrayal of Snow. She didn't look anything like she has looked in previous stories. I know that one of the strengths of the series is that there are so many artists involved and therefore there will be differences at times, but to be so totally different was a bit disconcerting.

I have just requested the next Fables book via interlibrary loan. I wish that my own library had them, but I think I can still read the whole series from other library systems so it is all good.

Rating 4


Collecting issues #60-69 of the hit series, collecting the epochal "Good Prince" storyline. Flycatcher is drawn into the spotlight as he discovers the startling truth about his own past as the Frog Prince. At the same time, he learns that the Adversary plans to destroy his foes once and for all. How can the meek Flycatcher stop this deadly foe?

Other contributors to this volume include Steve Leialoha, Aaron Alexovich and Andrew Pepoy.


  1. I only skimmed this review as I've just finished the second volume in the series.
    I'm glad you're still enjoying this series enough to give 4 out of 5s 10 books in :)

    1. The quality actually remains fairly consistent throughout the series.



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