It seems rather tragic that I have read Fables in completely the wrong order (and I’m still missing having read about half the volumes). One day when I have money I’ll just buy the set because you can’t go wrong; so far, Rose Red and The Good Prince are tied for being the best: in other words, absolutely amazing pieces of comics writing, beautifully drawn, and just an overall joy. Bill Willingham is a genius and Mark Buckingham’s pencilling gets better each volume.
Vol. 15 has introduced some characters new to me, including Ozma, a powerful witch I at first confused with Bigby’s little girl form that Kevin Thorne put him into in The Great Fables Crossover. Maddy, another witch, and Frau Totenkinder’s original (and extremely powerful, kick-@$$ ) form—it seems it’s all about the witches. In what must be a coup of epic proportions for longtime followers, Rose Red finally reveals what happened to Snow White and Rose Red in their childhoods (and the grimness is unrelenting; do not look here for romanticism or fairy tales)—she doesn’t reveal who gives her the courage and determination to stop mourning Boy Blue and re-assume leadership of the Farm, but it seems it was someone she didn’t expect.
Beauty and the Beast’s baby is born; Mr. North finds out something that could imperil his grandchildren; Mister Dark eat some teeth; Geppetto hatches rebellion and the dragon/crow Clara breathes some fire. It’s great. Since this volume also includes the 100th story, there’s a great deal of additional material which makes it hefty and easily worth buying if you have the chance.
The cover informs me that the Eisner Award count is fourteen; do yourself a favour and, I implore you, start reading Fables.