Wednesday, June 20, 2007


I've spent the past three days reading two things - Fables: Sons of Empire and the April issue of Fantasy & Science Fiction.

Fables: Sons of Empire is the 9th volume in the long-running series, collecting 8 issues. We get the 4 issue "Sons of Empire," which focuses on the potential invasion plans (of the entire Mundane world) of the Adversary and his council. That is intercut with bits that catch us up on Flycatcher, Red Riding Hood, Boy Blue, and more. That's followed by the Christmas issue, "Jiminy Christmas!," in which on the wolf cubs meets Santa and learns his secrets. Next is the two issue "Father and Son," drawn by Mike Allred; it shows what happens when Bibgy, Snow White, and their children visit the North Wind in his castle. Finally, there's an issue devoted to reader questions and it's drawn by a variety of artists. I wouldn't suggest this volume as a starting point to the series but for long time readers, it's a solid group of issue if not quite on par with the high points of the series. Oh, it is always written by Bill Willingham and usually drawn by Mark Buckingham.

As for F&SF, it is a special "Gene Wolfe issue," featuring commentary on Gene from Neil Gaiman and Michael Swanwick (two of my favorite writers), a more critical essay on his work, and a new longer Wolfe story, "Memorare." Wolfe is one of those writers I always respect when I run across his work and I should really start seeking more of it out...trying one of his novels, perhaps. His story here is one about memorials in space that can be dangerous as well as the dangers of our relationships - it's good stuff. The rest of the issue is rounded out with the usual columns and stories from David Gerrold (with a fun sequel to a recent story), Donald Mead (a so-so story about the aftermath of the Donner party), and David D. Levine (with a cool look at a made-up legend and its impact, told in reverse.

So, what's the "in-between" here? Well, I've decided to stop my practice of putting two books in between my "Harry Potter Project," so I've started the fifth book. At this point, I'm letting the story carry me..we'll see if I can be totally reread by the end of the month...

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