Fables Vol. 18; Cubs in Toyland
by Bill Willingham
Illustrated by Mark Buckingham, Gene Ha, Steve Leialoha
Genre: Graphic Novel, Adult, Fantasy, Fairy Tale Retelling
Summary (Goodreads): The most harrowing epic since the inception of the series starts when Snow and Bigby's cub Therese receives a Christmas gift from an unknown admirer. This red plastic boat may hold the key to a deep, disturbing secret that will incite a series of soul-crushing events for the denizens of Fabletown. Plus, a backup feature that shows how Bigby received his fate, drawn by artist Gene Ha.
My Thoughts: This may be my favorite volume. Not necessarily because of the story but I loved the graphics in this one.
It features the spoiled daughter of Snow and Bigby, Therese. Somehow she receives a plastic toy boat for Christmas. Therese ends up going on an adventure with said boat and ends up in Toyland. Unfortunately, being crowned the Queen of Toyland isn't everything Therese was hoping for. Everything is plastic or make believe which doesn't help a human cub survive. Through some eye opening experiences and great sacrifices by others Therese starts to grow up and finds away to not only save herself but the rest of the toys on this desolate place.
There is also a bit about the Fables moving back into the new Fabletown. I'm not sure where they are going with Spratt but she is not a favorite for me.
As I said, while the story was great, the graphics for this were some of my favorite in the series. There was something stark and creepy about the island and it's inhabitants. I cannot really say more than that but for me it worked.
The story and artwork of Bigby's fate was a nice addition/break from the main part of this volume.