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Fables: Werewolves of the Heartland by Bill…

Fables: Werewolves of the Heartland (edition 2012)

by Bill Willingham, Jim Fern (Illustrator)

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135None88,375 (3.69)7
Title:Fables: Werewolves of the Heartland
Authors:Bill Willingham
Other authors:Jim Fern (Illustrator)
Info:Vertigo (2012), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 152 pages
Collections:Your library
Tags:fiction, arcs, urban, fantasy

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Fables: Werewolves of the Heartland by Bill Willingham

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Summary: Bigby Wolf has ventured away from New York to search for a new location for Fabletown, given that Mr. Dark has destroyed the original. When he runs across a sign for a town named "Story City", and scents something strange on the wind, he can't help but investigate. What he finds there is an old friend - and some old enemies - in an entire town that is populated by werewolves. Bigby, the archetype of the werewolf, is welcomed to town as a god, but he soon finds out that he's stepped into the middle of a complex web of factions and alliances that permeate the town... and that his presence among them might be the spark that ignites a deadly conflict.

Review: I wanted to like this one more than I did. I love Fables, Bigby is one of my favorite characters, and the idea of an isolated midwestern town full of werewolves sounded promising. But I couldn't get into it, for a variety of reasons. First of all, the artwork did not work for me. I don't know that I could have articulated this prior to reading this version, but one of the things that I like about Bigby is that when he wolves out, he actually *wolves* out. Werewolves that turn into actual wolves appeal to me more than werewolves that turn into half-men/half-wolf; I've yet to see the a version of the bipedal form of werewolf in which its posture and movements look menacing rather than just plain awkward.

I also had a hard time keeping all of the new characters straight, not to mention all of their various factions and alliances and schemes. Everything just seemed more convoluted and complex than it needed to be for a relatively short stand-alone piece, which made it hard for me to latch on to any single piece of the drama, other than sitting back and going "oooh, explosions!". As a consequence, I enjoyed the scenes with Bigby in them, where he gets to town and is processing what's going on, more than I enjoyed the backstory of what *is* going on in the town, and much more than the many pages of fight scenes. 3 out of 5 stars.

Recommendation: It's Fables, and it's Willingham, so it's not terrible, or even bad, but it's also not one of the stronger entries in the series. Long-time fans will probably want to pick it up, but I think newcomers should start with one of the other books to really get a feel for what this series can do at its best. ( )
  fyrefly98 | Feb 24, 2013 |
Not much to see here. I mean that figuratively, though, since everyone is naked on just about every page. But there is very little of interest in this story and the artwork didn't jump out at me. I feel like Willingham just wanted to do a story with a whole town of werewolves and came up with the smallest amount of plot possible to do it with. There is some callback to the history of the series, specifically Bigby's WWII adventures, but this volume is largely disconnected from Fables as a whole.

If you're a longtime Fables fan, you'll probably want to check it out for completeness' sake. If you are new to Fables, a better introduction would be Cinderella: From Fabletown with Love or just start with the first volume of the main series! ( )
  josh314 | Jan 1, 2013 |
The premise: ganked form BN.com: At long last! The long-awaited original FABLES: WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND graphic novel is here!

Bigby Wolf embarks on a quest through the American Heartland to find a new location for Fabletown, a secret society of exiled fairy tale characters living among the "mundys." In his wanderings, Bigby stumbles across Story City, a small town that seems to be occupied solely by werewolves. Oddly enough, they seem to already know and revere Bigby, but at the same time they've captured and caged him. 

FABLES: WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND tells an epic tale that began well before Bigby Wolf set foot in the bucolic plains of the Midwest. It began long ago when he served in World War II and became mired in a Nazi experiment that would change nations. It's soon evident that murder in Story City is the least of their sins, and unraveling the town's many mysteries may cost Bigby, the seventh son of the North Wind, much more than his own life.

My Rating: It's a Gamble

It's an underwhelming story, to be honest. I won't say it's bad: it's just a quickie adventure that lacks tension because reader's can pretty much guess how it ends, and the details regarding the residents of the city itself are, well, a non-starter, I guess. We don't know these people at all, so we don't have any stake in their fates. The ending itself is a little odd, raising a question of what's going to happen down the road rather than simply resolving the story. I supposed I'll know how that plays out when it shows up in the series, but as it stands, this story is rather forgettable. Maybe it'll be heightened later down the road, but for now, it was just a quick read that doesn't really add anything to the Fables universe, let alone to werewolf stories as a whole.

Spoilers, yay or nay?: Nay. Honestly, I don't have a lot to say about this, so no need to worry about spoilers. If you're interested in the full review, just visit my blog! You can go directly to the review by clicking the link below, and as always, comments and discussion are most welcome. :)


Happy Reading! ( )
  devilwrites | Dec 4, 2012 |
Review courtesy of All Things Urban Fantasy

I’ve had a hit or miss relationship with graphic novels, bouncing back and forth between original issues and graphic adaptations of old familiar favorites. FABLES: WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND is a strong vote in the “original content” category, as I found this story thoroughly entertaining.

I have only passing familiarity with the Fable series as a whole, but that did not detract from my enjoyment of WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND. If anything, this book is an interlude outside other plot lines. The few hints of past Fables that I missed just piqued my interest to go back and read more of the series (Bigby and Snow White’s story in particular has my full attention). WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND is light on romance (which is good, as our hero is married and no where near his wife), but werewolves provide nude eye candy on almost every page. Hairy eye candy at times, but eye candy nonetheless.

WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND employs flashbacks to bounce this story from between present and past. The violence that ensues isn’t necessarily inevitable, but believable enough. One issue wasn’t enough to develop Bigby or his supporting cast as particularly charismatic or nuanced characters either, but I’ll definitely be keeping my eyes peeled for them in the future. WEREWOLVES OF THE HEARTLAND is a fun fairy tale to pass the time, and a welcome glimpse of the Fables world. For fans of the series, this should be a must read. For intermittent graphic novel readers like myself, it was a pleasant diversion.

Sexual Content: Nudity, a sexual situation. ( )
  Capnrandm | Dec 2, 2012 |
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Bigby Wolf embarks on a quest through the American Heartland to find a new location for Fabletown, a secret society of exiled fairy tale characters living among the "mundys." In his wanderings, Bigby stumbles across Story City, a small town that seems to be occupied solely by werewolves. Oddly enough, they seem to already know and revere Bigby, but at the same time they've captured and caged him.… (more)

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