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Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale by Zack…
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Serenity: The Shepherd's Tale

by Zack Whedon, Chris Samnee (Illustrator), Joss Whedon

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8024517,118 (3.78)18

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Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
This book appears to be the last of the graphic novel tie-ins to the Serenity-verse, and it is one about which I have very mixed feelings. I admit, my feelings were mixed even as I picked it up. Did I want the mystery of the Shepherd's origins revealed? Could the "real story" be as good as the mystery? Now that I've read it, I don't know that it is.

This story is told as flashback after flashback. Starting with the attack on Haven and Book's fatal wound -- tracing choices back through his life, each illuminating paths followed later, ending with his leaving home as a teenager. My feelings are mixed because this is a good story. A good story, but...

Any fan of the series couldn't help but cheer many of the Shepherd's life choices, nor fail to sympathize with many of his circumstances. However, without getting too spoilery, this story does not explain at all to my mind, the central mystery of Shepherd's story: why, when the Firefly crew were about to be turned away by the Alliance, would checking Book's ident card lead them to an about face -- bringing him in for treatment before sending them on their merry way? The story in this book could explain some other mysteries, but to me, it makes the treatment described above even less likely.

So, frustrating. But perhaps worth it for a few scenes of Shepherd practicing his faith. And maybe Jayne calling River a jelly brain, who is not offended while she's doing a single hand-stand. Still. Very mixed. ( )
  greeniezona | Dec 6, 2017 |
This book is a must read for any Browncoat or Firefly fan. It beautifully fills in the story of Shepherd Book. Joss and Zack did a great job giving us the mysterious history of our favorite Shepherd! ( )
  pirogoeth | Jul 11, 2017 |
I wasn't blown away by Book's tale. I thought he would tie in more with the operative and be a slightly different character undergoing redemption. I suppose I expected more. ( )
  TysonAdams | Jun 20, 2017 |
An exploration of the mysterious past for Shepherd Book, a nicely continued what-if for a series canceled far to soon. ( )
  bensdad00 | Jan 10, 2017 |
Starting with the Alliance massacre at the Haven Mining Colony (seen in Serenity), The Shepherd's Tale explores Shepherd Book's backstory, jumping back in time with each chapter: two years, during his time on Serenity; two years before that, when he left the Abbey to rejoin the world - and was recruited as a passenger by Kaylee; ten years before that, he's drinking alone in a bar and getting trounced by bitter Alliance soldiers. And so on and so forth.

I wasn't too crazy about this narrative choice at first, but the OMG surprise twist ending completely upended my thinking on the matter. In light of the ending, it's easy to see why Whedon chose to order the book this way.

As for the artwork, it's generally pretty great - serviceable when needed, downright lovely at times - though some of the military-grade white dudes are rather interchangeable and hard to tell apart. Jayne's spot on; Kaylee is close but not quite, so much so that I had a kind of uncanny valley thing going; and it was pretty cool to watch Shep reverse age as we travel back in time.

I accidentally read this one out of order, but luckily it's far enough removed from the other comics that this wasn't an issue. ( )
  smiteme | May 18, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 45 (next | show all)
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Whedon, Zackprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Samnee, ChrisIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Whedon, Jossmain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Dedication
First words
Shepherd, when's the Captain and them comin' round again?
Quotations
You're gonna come with us.
You're all alone. No one's gonna save you.
You see, this life is a fight and if you sit still, someone will get the drop on you. They'll pin you down.
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One of Serenity's greatest mysteries is finally revealed in The Shepherd's Tale, filling in the life of one of the show's most beloved characters - Shepherd Book! Who was Book before meeting Mal and the rest of the Serenity crew, how did he become one of their most trusted allies, and how did he find God in a bowl of soup?… (more)

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