Posts Tagged ‘Bill Willingham’


Peter & Max: A Fables Novel, Now an E-Book

January 26, 2011

Peter & Max: A Fables Novel by Bill Willingham was released in paperback in late December (incidentally, while it retails for $14.99, you can currently pick it up at Amazon for a cool $10.19). Likewise, the E-book is available for those that prefer reading on electronic devices and is currently available for $9.99.

More on the electronic release from Vertigo:

Based on FABLES, the New York Times bestselling, Hugo Award nominated, Eisner Award winning and one of the longest running comic book series published by Vertigo, PETER & MAX: A FABLES NOVEL tells the dark story of brothers Peter Piper, of Pickled Pepper fame, and Max Piper, the Pied Piper of Hamelin. Willingham deftly weaves an epic tale of good and evil, sibling rivalry, magic, music and a quest for revenge that spans from medieval times to the present day, from the heart of the Black Forest to NYC. Full of vivid detail, imagination and adventure, PETER & MAX illuminates the breadth of Willingham’s knowledge of literature and his true storytelling ability.

So get ready to download PETER & MAX: A FABLES NOVEL to your favorite device and take this magical story with you to lands near and far!

If you’d like to sample the book first, Vertigo has chapters one and two available to read online for free. This was a great novel, whether you are familiar with Fables or not (though all the better if you are) so get to it my friends!


Bill Willingham’s Peter & Max: 7 Chapters In

June 28, 2010

Bill Willingham’s Peter & Max is turning out to be exactly what I needed this summer.

Seven chapters into the audio version — enthusiastically read by Wil Wheaton — I’m really starting to resent the fact that I’ve made it to my destination (thank you traffic?) and that I’ve got to turn the story off for the next several hours. Not all of my recent selections have been as compelling truth be told and this one is really coming off as a breath of fresh air. Not that I expected anything less given the caliber of the comic it’s born from and that I’ve enjoyed over the course of numerous volumes. Peter & Max is just as full of surprises as the Fables comic series from which it springs forth (you never know how things will quite turn out in Fables) and in at least a couple of ways the book may be even more impressive as Willingham has plenty of room to weave his exciting narrative and really flesh out the characters in the process.

Peter Piper, for example, is introduced early on as the stories stoic hero and we’re immediately impressed with the man he’s become given the care he provides his wife (won’t spoil who she is), the hospitality he extends to his neighbors and the willingness by which he assumes responsibility; but we also get to see that there’s a far more adventurous side to Peter (with professional training to boot?) as we are treated to flashbacks through alternating chapters of Peter’s youth, reveling in the people, places and events that later shape the man. I would reckon that one of the best scenes so far occurs when he’s about 10-years old, listening to a story his Dad must have told umpteen times, about a family ancestor and a very impressive battle. Well, apparently Peter just couldn’t contain himself  — knowing the story so well — and enthusiastically shouts out what comes next as his proud Dad pauses to allow him the moment. It was one of those scenes where the character’s heart is on full display and the result was a very memorable moment where I had to cheer for the little guy, and really hope the best for a tragic situation that was sure to come.

The story will be over before I know it, but assuming it remains anywhere near as compelling as it is now it’s going to be one of those books I have little choice but to read again (and perhaps again and again). Happily, I look forward to adding the hardcover to my shelf for just that purpose.

[In the speculative fiction audio queue: Bill Willingham’s Peter & Max, J.R.R. (& Christopher) Tolkien’s The Children of Húrin, Brandon Sanderson’s Warbreaker and I haven’t forgotten Terry Pratchett’s Guards! Guards!]


Down the Mysterly River by Bill Willingham

April 15, 2010

Tor announced Down the Mysterly River by Bill Willingham in early January, but in the case there are a few Willingham and Fables fans lurking about that may have missed out on the news (like yours truly) I wanted to post the following as we await future announcements, including its release date:

‘We are thrilled to be publishing the very talented Bill Willingham in our Starscape imprint. Bill’s first middle grade prose novel, Down the Mysterly River, is a spirited, by turns harrowing, occasionally laugh-out-loud, highly original fantasy that we are confident will enjoy every bit of success as his hugely popular Fables series’ says Kathleen Doherty, Publisher of Starscape/Tor Teen/Tor Kids.

Down the Misterly River was actually first published in 2001 by Clockwork Storybook, and has remained sadly out of print until the announcement that Tor/Starscape had picked it up. Not a lot has been revealed about the book directly from the publisher, but for anyone interested in learning a little more, here’s how the original back cover blurb described the story:

As odd a collection of fugitives as there ever was: a wolf who is not a wolf; a badger who is also an ex-army veteran; the brave sheriff of  a lost forest realm; and a big, ugly, stinky, yellow monster. Together they’re on the run from the dreaded Blue Cutters, who seem bent on their destruction. To escape the Cutters, the four friends will have to flee out of the hills and down the Mysterly River, to reach the one far away place of safety the Cutters aren’t allowed to go: the castle of the Wizard Edgar.

In his Heroes Wood, Bill Willingham has created an enchanting new land of magic and adventure that might lie just down the river from Toad Hall, down the road from Narnia, or over the hill from the Hundred Acre Wood. Willingham gives us deadly sword fights, narrow escapes, lethal traps, surprising betrayals, and all the other necessary elements of a thrilling adventure tale. But at its heart this is also a mystery story, and if the four fugitives can’t first solve the mystery of the Heroes Wood they may never live to reach sanctuary.

I know I was interested in learning more about the tale so there, at least, is an insight into what’s to come for anyone else that’s interested in the project. I imagine that Starscape will find ways to add a little hoopla of their own to the new edition of the book so as soon as more info. is available, and I hear wind of it, I’ll happily post it here.


Preview: Peter & Max, A Fables Novel

August 3, 2009

Peter & Max_2“For most of his long years Peter Piper wanted nothing more than to live a life of peace and safety in some remote cozy cottage, married to his childhood sweetheart, who grew into the only woman he could ever love. Which is pretty much what happened. But there were complications along the way, as there often are, because few love stories are allowed to be just that and nothing else.”

That’s it, there’s just waaaaaay too many well executed and wholly worthwhile works of imagination out there for my own good! I literally can’t keep up with the announcements and just when I catch up with a particular work, like Hydra, another [4] pop up in its place. And ironically enough, the latest project designed to lure money from my unsuspecting wallet is Peter & Max, a stand-alone novel set in Willingham’s critically acclaimed Fable universe under DC’s Vertigo imprint, starring none other than Peter Piper (and his older brother Max).

Willingham’s Fables takes place in a world that is fun, fascinating and positively peculiar — where your favorite fairy tale characters come to life in completely original ways every bit as compelling as those in the original tales because in Fabletown the characters lives are examined beyond the familiar, where things are not always what they seemed and the passing of time brings all new adventures. Case in point is this new prose novel, a first for the denizens of Fabletown, where the tale of Peter Piper is fleshed out beyond the popular children’s story.

Long ago, in the deepest dark of The Black Forest, two brothers – Peter Piper and his older brother Max – encountered ominous forces that changed 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.

PETER and MAX: A FABLES NOVEL features the deft prose of award-winning comic book writer Bill Willingham and lush ink spot illustrations from FABLES artist Steve Leialoha. The novel also reveals secrets of some of the regular FABLES series cast members including Bigby Wolf, Frau Totenkinder and Bo Peep. Included as well is an 8-page bonus sequential comic story by Willingham and Leialoha that serves as a bridge to the FABLES graphic novel collections. And don’t miss the special FABLES #1/PETER and MAX PREVIEW on sale in July!

For an extended .pdf preview of Peter & Max: A Fables Novel, click here and be on the lookout for the hardcover release October 13th.

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