When an unspeakable tragedy befalls a family of traveling minstrels, they become stranded and left for dead. Here in the heart of The Black Forest, Peter Piper and his older brother Max encounter ominous forces that will change them both irreparably. Thus begins an epic tale of sibling rivalry, magic, music and revenge that spans medieval times to the present day when their deadly conflict surfaces in the placid calm of modern-day Fabletown. Writer Bill Willingham deftly weaves a story of adventure and dark fantasy that will keep listeners riveted until the fateful last words. Fans of the ongoing FABLES series will uncover the secret histories of some of their favorite characters including Bigby Wolf, Frau Totenkinder and Bo Peep to name a few. New listeners will find PETER & MAX: A FABLES NOVEL a welcome entree into Bill Willingham’s inimitable mythos that has garnered numerous awards and a Hugo nomination.
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Bill Willingham never fought a desperate and losing battle in a good cause, never contributed to society in a meaningful way, and hasn’t lived a life of adventure, but he’s had a few moments of near adventure. At some point in his life Bill learned how to get paid for telling scurrilous lies to good people, and he’s been doing it ever since. He lives in the wild and frosty woods of Minnesota with a dog and a cat he hasn’t met yet.From School Library Journal :
Gr 8 Up–The Fables, a group of folk and fairytale characters, are living as a community in New York after being chased out of their previous lands by an evil conqueror. Some of their story has been told through a series of award-winning graphic novels, but Bill Willingham has written this tale as a novel (Vertigo, 2009) that can stand alone. An author's note introduces the audiobook, providing backstory to help those new to the series. The cast of characters includes many recognizable figures: Snow White, the (former) Big Bad Wolf, Rose Red, Peter Piper and his brother Max (The Pied Piper), Bo Peep who is married to Peter, and others. Through wonderful pacing, flashbacks, and clever references to the well-known tales of these characters' former lives, listeners are transported to a world where the storybook fables become real. Wil Wheaton does a wonderful job in timing the drama, humor, and tragedy of this complex tale, only missing the mark with the slow-paced delivery of Bigby Wolf's lines. Be aware that this is not a Disney-esque vision of the world. The characters curse when appropriate, the sex life of Peter and Bo is called into question, and violence is not sugar-coated. The intense conflict between Peter and Max harkens back to the gritty fairytales of old where blood is shed, evil exists, and things are not always as they seem.Genevieve Gallagher, Charlottesville High School, VA
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