Fables: 1001 Nights of Snowfall
By: Bill Willingham (Writer), Esao Andrews (Illustrator), John Bolton (Illustrator), Mark Buckingham (Illustrator), James Jean (Illustrator), Derek Kirk Kim (Illustrator), Jill Thompson (Illustrator), Mark Wheatley (Illustrator), Charles Vess (Illustrator), Michael Wm. Kaluta (Illustrator), Tara McPherson (Illustrator
Format/Source: Paperback; my brother’s copy
This volume, set in the early days of Fabletown, long before the FABLES series began, featuring sequences illustrated by Charles Vess, Brian Bolland, John Bolton, Michael Wm. Kaluta, James Jean, Mark Buckingham, Jill Thompson and more, 1,001 NIGHTS OF SNOWFALL is both an entry point to the critically acclaimed series and an essential part of Willingham’s enchanting and imaginative FABLES mythos.
Traveling in Arabia as an Ambassador from the exiled FABLES community, Snow White is captured by the local sultan who wants to marry her (and then kill her). But the clever Snow attempts to charm the sultan instead by playing Scheherazade, telling him fantastic stories for a total of 1,001 nights. Running the gamut from horror to dark intrigue to mercurial coming-of-age, FABLES:1,001 NIGHTS OF SNOWFALL reveals the secret histories of familiar FABLES characters through a series of compelling and visually illustrative tales.
I picked this collection up for Christmas for my brother. I had been eyeing it for a while and I knew he would appreciate this collection as it contained some origin stories for some of the characters we know regularly from the series. May contain spoilers if you’re not familar with the series or haven’t read it!
This was a very interestig assortment of origin stories, presented in the 1001 Arabian Nights format with Snow White telling the stories instead of the vizier’s daughter. Readers and fans of the series will greatly enjoy this collection as it shows the back stories of a number of characters that have not been shown in the series run so far–Snow White and her early/happy days with Prince Charming, Old King Cole, the red fox, etc–and how the Adversary basically brought ruin into the lives of many of these characters and shaped the course of events for them. Snow White’s backstory was interesting and quite sad in what happened to her, Prince Charming was surprisingly selfless back then, Old King Cole was a total boss (!!!), Bigby’s early days with his family and how he became the Big Bad Wolf. Of, and omg the frog from the Princess and the Frog fable has such a sad backstory–the saddest of the lot! 🙁
What’s really interesting about this format is that each of the stories has a different artist illustrating so there’s no confusion and you get a different feel for each story. Like any anthology there were a few misses–the story about the killer bunny (???) that turned human was a little baffling as I don’t know who the character is in the series, not to mention his story was very short; the art for Snow and Rose Red meeting the witch from the Hansel and Gretel tale wasn’t exactly the best–but overall this was an enjoyable collection and something fans of the series should check out!