March 6th, 2012

Carnival

#22 Fables Vol 1: Legends in Exile by Bill Willingham

After the loss of their homelands to the adversary, characters of legend are forced to flee into our world where they find their happily ever afters destroyed, and must deal with the every day frustrations of normal life. King Cole is in charge of what they call “Fabletown” but it’s really Snow White that runs the place. When she discovers that her sister Rose Red has gone missing, Snow enlists the help of Bigby (the big bad wolf) and the two set out to solve the mystery.Only the further they investigate, the more likely it seems that Rose Red was murdered.

Fables is comic book series that updates classic characters from fairy tales and nursery rhymes by transporting them to modern day new york city. As someone who enjoys both fairy tales and fairy tale retellings, it’s a book that’s been on my radar for a while, and I’m quite happy that I’ve finally picked up the first trade paperback, Legends in Exile, which turned out to be a very fun read. I quite enjoyed exploring it’s more realistic twists on traditional fantasy characters. For example, Prince Charming, far from being a dashing hero, is a handsome jerk with the ability to charm women into doing pretty much anything for him. Jack (of such tales as Jack and the Beanstalk) is a clever con artist. The characters we meet here may be a little prickly around the edges (likely a natural reaction of having your happily ever after taken away from you), but they I found to be quite likable and interesting.

The main storyline of Legends in Exile is a satisfying, if somewhat predictable whodunit lead by the Big Bad Wolf. Even more interesting is the larger storyline in the background, involving the adversary. I think the author did a good job of balancing out the mystery storyline with the larger one. Also worth mentioning in the artwork. The interior art is pretty good, and very easy to follow. The covers, which are included in this collection, are really lovely. The collection ends with a short story written in prose. It gives us background information on the character of Bigby and how he came to meet Snow. I thought this did a really good job of exposing more information on the adversary storyline, and on Bigby himself, making it a nice bonus for the reader.

Legends in Exile, which collects the first five issues of the Fables comic book series, is a fun fast read that combines an entertaining mystery plot with a fascinating larger fantasy storyline. I would recommend it to fans of comics, and fairy tales. I am planning on continuing the series for at least the next couple of graphic novels.

Rating: four and a half stars
Length: 128 pages
Source: Lewiston Public Library
Other books I've read by this author: This is my first

Next I will be reviewing Touch of Power by Maria V. Snyder

xposted to temporaryworlds, bookish, and goodreads
Bear?

Cross-dressing Romances

I just finished reading the Leviathan trilogy by Scott Westerfeld. The two main characters were a boy and a girl who was dressed as a boy in order to work on-board an aircraft. It was the first time I read a romance that featured a character cross-dressing (with the exception of Shakespeare's plays), and I really enjoyed the romance between the two.

Anybody have any books of cross-dressing romances that they can recommend to me?
Doctor Who

Urban Fantasy from the Male Perspective?

Seeking: Recommendations for Urban Fantasy written by male authors and preferably featuring a male lead character. Bonus points for non-caucasian characters.

Urban Fantasy is my comfort genre of choice but I'd like to break away from the overabundance of caucasian female characters and authors on my bookshelf.


Update:
I compiled a list of books I may be interested in reading based on everyone's recommendations as well as this list from Tor. I'm sharing my list here in case anyone else is interested.

Aaronovitch, Ben: Rivers of London aka Midnight Riot (Peter Grant, #1)
Acevedo, Mario: The Nymphos of Rocky Flats (Felix Gomez, #1)
Adams, Douglas: Dirk Gently's Holistic Detective Agency (Dirk Gently, #1)
Butcher, Jim: Storm Front (The Dresden Files, #1)
Carey, Mike: The Devil You Know (Felix Castor, #1)
Connolly, Harry: Child of Fire (Twenty Palaces, #1)
Franco, Mark del: Unshapely Things (Connor Grey, #1)
Gaiman, Neil: American Gods & Anansi Boys
Gaiman, Neil: Good Omens
Gaiman, Neil: Neverwhere
Gaiman, Neil: The Sandman
Green, Simon R.: Something from the Nightside (Nightside, #1)
Green, Simon R.: The Man With the Golden Torc (Secret Histories, #1)
Griffith, Clay: The Greyfriar (Vampire Empire, #1)
Gustainis, Justin: Black Magic Woman (Quincey Morris, #1)
Hearne, Kevin: Hounded (Iron Druid Chronicles, #1)
Kadrey, Richard: Sandman Slim (Sandman Slim, #1)
Lint, Charles de: Dreams Underfoot: The Newford Collection
Lint, Charles de: Someplace to be Flying (Newford series)
Lukyanenko, Sergei: Night Watch (Watch, #1)
McCullough, Kelly: WebMage (WebMage, #1)
Miéville, China: Perdido Street Station (New Crobuzon, #1)
Moore, Christopher: A Dirty Job
Moore, Christopher: Bloodsucking Fiends (A Love Story, #1)
Peters, S.M.: Whitechapel Gods
Sniegoski, Thomas E.: A Kiss Before the Apocalypse (Remy Chandler, #1)