The tale of Ali Baba, Sleeping Beauty (Briar Rose) and Lumi the Snow Queen comes to a cconclusion this issue with Lumi making a last stand against Hadeon, the evil fairy who originally cursed Briar Rose to die after she was snubbed from her birth celebration.  Hadeon was first driven to attack Lumi’s castle when she sensed her name being said repeatedly, by Jonah the bottle imp who was telling the tale of Sleeping Beauty.  Using this logic last issue, Lumi chanted the names of the other good fairies and summoned them to her aid, but things don’t go as she planned, due to Hadeon invoking a “loophole” that prevents the other fairies from assisting Lumi.  But that’s okay, a similar loophole prevents her magics from protecting her from Briar Rose, who understandably has an ax to grind.

Things finally get resolved, with Ali Baba choosing which of these lovelies is his true love.  It’s not all smooth sailing, but both parties agree to work on a relationship.  The third party in this triangle departs for adventures unkown and Jonah finally gets to travel into the real (Mundie) world, which is what he was always trained for.

This was a fun, light-hearted conclusion to this particular storyline.  It was nice that Bill Willingham was able to step outside the normal ‘Fable’ setting and flesh out some characters that had basically been written aside.  It was also fun for him to simply write a tale that was not tied to all the polical dealings and life-or-death warring in ‘Fables.’

Phil Jiminez’s fantastic artwork gave this book a different tone as well.  His designs are amazing and in his drawings of Lumi and Briar Rose, it felt almost like I was watching him play dress up with the most beautiful dolls in the world.  The various fairies are also pretty amazing-looking… all very different from one another, but really interesting just to look at.

All in all, a fun book.  Nothing major or Earth-shaking.  It doesn’t even really impact the main ‘Fables’ book.  It’s just a nice excursion, like a weekend getaway.

Verdict: Buy

Written by Bill Willingham
Art by Phil Jiminez
Cover by Adam Hughes