Review – Fables Volume 1: Legends In Exile

fables Volume 1 Legends In Exile 
When a savage creature known only as the Adversary conquered the fabled lands of legends and fairy tales, all of the infamous inhabitants of folklore were forced into exile. Disguised among the normal citizens of modern-day New York, these magical characters have created their own peaceful and secret society within an exclusive luxury apartment building called Fabletown. But when Snow White's party-girl sister, Rose Red, is apparently murdered, it is up to Fabletown's sheriff, a reformed and pardoned Big Bad Wolf, to determine if the killer is Bluebeard, Rose's ex-lover and notorious wife killer, or Jack, her current live-in boyfriend and former beanstalk-climber.

Fairy Tales have always been something I love, whether they are the classic Grimm stories or the more modern Disney versions. So when I heard about a graphic novel series featuring all of the classic fairy tale characters together in a place called FableTown, I knew I had to read it.

Legends In Exile is the first volume in the Fables series, which collects the individual comic issues together in one book. Volume 1 gives the reader an introduction to how the Fables came to be living in modern day society. Apparently a being known as the Adversary started up an army and forced the Fables to seek a new home. It’s not explained in-depth in this volume, but the Fables found a way to cross over into the human dimension and set up a new home for themselves in New York. Using magic which they managed to smuggle away with them, they charm the humans into not noticing much of the strangeness which surrounds them.

Most of the main characters are introduced here. Snow White, assistant to the Mayor of Fabletown (King Cole) however it is clear that Snow runs the show, with her intelligence, business savvy and ice queen personality. Bigby, The Big Bad Wolf, has given up his huffing-puffing ways and is now the Sherriff of Fabletown. Boy Blue is present here also, as Snow White’s office clerk and general gopher. Boy Blue’s flying monkey, Bufkin (of Oz) has an important job as head librarian of the cavernous Fabletown library.

Legends In Exile begins with Jack (Horner, Beanstalk) running to Bigby for help because it seems as though his girlfriend (also Snow White’s sister) Rose Red has been murdered. The investigation into Red’s disappearance and suspected murder reveals many secrets within Fabletown and successfully opens this series.

I enjoyed Volume 1 of Fables immensely, the characters and plotlines are incredibly well done. Although Fables is a comic, it does contain mature content that may not be appropriate reading for younger children. Fables is the perfect reading experience for those who want something a little more grown-up than the original nursery rhymes we remember from childhood.

Fables Volume 1 collects issues 1-5 of the Fables series.
Old Tales Revisited Unusual Suspects Blood Tells Remembrance Day Famous Parlour Room Scene
fables 1-1 Old Tales ReVisited fables 1-2 The Unusual Suspects fables 1-3 Blood Tells fables 1-4 Remembrance Day fables 1-5 The Famous Parlor Room Scene -Sans Parlor
Written by Bill Willingham; Art by Lan Medina, Steve Leialoha and Craig Hamilton; Painted Cover by James Jean; Published by Vertigo

Please be sure to check out these other great reviews of Fables.

© 2008-2010 Joanne Mosher of The Book Zombie. All rights reserved.


Fyrefly said...

I just read this recently (review here), and loved it! I was a little apprehensive since I hadn't read graphic novels before, but now I'm anxiously awaiting my hold on volume 2 to come in at the library.

Anonymous said...

I liked Fables a lot too -- I reviewed it here. I think Willingham does a good job of taking the sort of implied characteristics of the fairy tale characters and making them part of the story -- I thought Prince Charming was hilarious!

Kim (Sophisticated Dorkiness)

Book Zombie said...

Thanks so much for pointing out your reviews, they are great! I have linked back to them in mine.

I'm so glad I found this series, but I've been waiting about a month for Volume 5 to come in at the library *gah* I may have to splurge and buy this one :)

Nymeth said...

Lovely review! I just love this series. And in my opinion it gets even better about the first book!

naida said...

these sound good, I want to read them now. I've never heard of these before.

Andi said...

Yayyy! I'm always SO excited when someone starts this series and enjoys it. I wrote my Masters thesis about it, and I really should revisit the series now that I'm no longer burned out. hehe