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Fable: The Balverine Order (Fable #1)

3.68  ·  Rating Details ·  623 Ratings  ·  55 Reviews
The days of magic and adventure are fading away, giving way to the age of industry and science. As the aged last Hero sits upon the throne of Albion, two friends-the privileged Thomas and his loyal servant, John- set out for the East in search of a legendary beast: the vicious, rarely-seen balverine. But their desire for adventure may be their ultimate undoing-because thei ...more
ebook, 416 pages
Published October 1st 2010 by Ace Books
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Oct 16, 2010 Chy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I'd've rather given it a 1.5, but maybe I'm... I dunno.

I always wanted to play Fable and so this book caught my attention.

Let me back up---I never really wanted to play Fable. I liked the idea of it, the good and evil aspects. What I wanted was to watch someone else play it.

Turns out, it's not as much fun to read that.

Just, wow. I mean, there were times I could hear video game music, I swear.

And the reason it did more than just catch my attention? The reason I bought it instead of just giving it
Oct 12, 2010 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Normally I dread ever even picking up a commercial novel, let alone actually drudging through and reading one, because so commonly they so filled with poorly assembled plots, story lines, and cliches that you spend the whole time reading the story completely distracted by feeling sorry for the author who sold his soul. But, with that said, every once in awhile i manage to stumble upon a commercial novel that is actually so well written that i can actually find myself completely forgetting i'm ev ...more
Mar 21, 2016 Colleen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Fable: Balverine Order
Well, when I was in the used book store I picked this one up. It's a fan fiction novel based on a video game... officially making me a total dork, but I couldn't resist it. It had a good, strong start. If you are familiar with the game, you know that with each successive game the world created develops technologically, and this book is set a little further ahead in a time where Heros are out of favor and gone except for the aged king of distant Albion (who doesn't appear in
Michelle (In Libris Veritas)
Oct 11, 2010 Michelle (In Libris Veritas) rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of the Fable games
Well if you are a gamer or more specifically an Xbox 360 player then you may be familiar with the game series called Fable. Which is basically a game based on your choices that you make as a Hero during the main story line to take down whatever evil threatens to topple the balance of the world. For instance even though your a Hero you may choose to do evil stuff like steal, raise taxes, kill people, sacrifice people or sell them to slavery, etc. Or you can choose to be the pure Hero who will do ...more
After the death of his mother, Thomas feels pressured to finally become a hero and seek out the balverine (think werewolf) that killed his brother; friend/loyal servant James tags along. And much adventure is had along the way, including pirates, mislaid pigs, and, of course, the odd balverine or two. It's always odd to do a novel set in a gameworld that sold itself on allowing the player to choose their own course. A novel has to set a course between telling a story that fits properly in the es ...more
Feb 22, 2011 Terry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gaming
As a boy, Thomas Kirkman witnesses his brother’s death at the claws of Balverines. But no one believes in Balverines anymore, or Hobbes or Hollow Men. Even Heroes are in short enough supply to make people question whether they really grow horns or glow from within. Thomas spends each day studying such fantastic creatures while his father despairs about having a son unwilling to take over the family business. Finally a cruel deathbed revelation from his mother spurs Thomas to action; he’ll travel ...more
This book suffered from what I like to call "game dropping"

It's like name dropping except instead of trying to gain your confidence by throwing out names intended to impress you, the writer of a book tries to convince the readers that the story is somehow tied to a game or worthy of it by dropping in elements that are within the game.

This book is full of them.
A boy starts out. Gets friend. Gets dog. Gets gun. Develops light touches of abilities as they progress. Becomes a hero with flies and red
So I was requested to read this book by my friend Amber, who is an absolute Fable fanatic. For those of you who don't know what Fable is, it is basically a current trilogy of Xbox games based in a kind of mythical land called Albion, and in each of the games, you take up the role of a Hero and set about trying to save the land from some evil guy. This book isn't a tale of any of the games - it is set around about in-between Fable II and Fable III, when there are no current Heroes around. I have ...more
Dustin Keller
I first heard about this book from the Fable III website and I couldn't believe that someone was finally making a book about my favorite video game. I picked this book up the day in hit the stores and went right into reading it. Now I liked the first part of the book while it was explaining how the how boys were and where in Albon they lived. The other thing I loved about this book was that it was this person from the shadows that came to tell the new king a story. I liked how Peter had the king ...more
Michelle *Queen of Dorks* Is In A Slump

I've read 54% (217 pages) and I'm getting nowhere fast. This book doesn't have any conflicts or battles or anything exciting enough to be called an adventure. The main characters are always agreeing with each other so much that they don't even seem to have seperate personalities, nor any other traits to differentiate themselves, for that matter. Given the origins of this story, I would've expected Hobbes/Hallow Men/Banshees/Trolls/Bandits or the ilk, but nothing; just nothing. And except for
Derek Jordan
May 05, 2011 Derek Jordan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-physical
I went into reading this with slightly low expectations. Reason being that only ever so often does a book entertain me enough if it is based on a video game. Anyway, I recommend anyone reading it go into it with low expectations as well, though not because it is bad, but because it will certainly be more enjoyable to you if you do.
Do not let this review turn your mind, but only to give you enough consideration to possibly read it. The story was good, funny and only slightly predictable. Though i
Mar 15, 2011 Wolf rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Every point made by the author was cliche and well-known. It was funny at points, but certainly not throughout. The characters were all annoying at some point, except for (in my humble opinion) Lady Molly Newsome, because she actually seemed interesting. All the characters were the usual archetypes, though, but the two main characters in particular had some key traits (that were supposed to separate them from being good and bad) that only showed up occasionally. I wasn't expecting much consideri ...more
Jan 10, 2011 Dani rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2011
While not a book I will remember over the years it was still a light, fun read. I'm all for James :D while Thomas got on my nerves near the end. It was surprisingly true to the game while beging able to create its own story.

I've never read anything by Peter David, and my expectations for Video Game knock off books is always very low. This one surprised me with its fun story.

If you keep in mind that your not really reading a novel on its own and just something for Lionhead to make more money the
Oct 01, 2010 Jeremy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Probably would say 3.5 stars if it were an option...

A fun read. The plot itself was somewhat generic, though I don't say that in a bad way. A tie in to the video game of the same name I expected as much. But I have to say in all the fantasy I read that it was nice to have a one and done stand alone that focused on a couple individuals instead of a large cast within an epic. Peter David did a great job with the characters, the dialogue and the pacing. Things moved along so readily that even withi
Jan 23, 2012 Daniel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
It is quite a shame this book turned out the way it did. From the beginning I saw strong and compelling characters in Thomas and James-the two protagonists. The story was entertaining all the way through right up until the final three chapters in which Peter David felt the need to add cliches from the Fable video games. I do not know if this was the result of executive meddling or not, but it ruined a good story. The ending was anti-climactic at best and characters became cardboard cutouts of th ...more
Sep 11, 2011 Dustin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: lovers of Fantasy and adventure.
Shelves: fantasy, tie-in
I'll admit, I've recently become weary of licensed novels, so under normal circumstances I would have left this book on the shelf at the local book store, but two things persuaded me to pick it up: 1)it was written by Peter David, one of my favorite authors and 2) it was 70% off.

I'm glad that I picked this book up. It had travel without feeling like a "travel adventure" book, it had great characters, an awesome build up, and a satasfying finish that has left me hoping that Peter David gets to w
Feb 11, 2011 Ryn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Pretty boring, average YA, I think. I LOVE the 'Sir Apropos of Nothing' series by Peter David, so I was expecting this to be something like it, at least in terms of comedy. Instead it was a humdrum, predictable story with no real meat to it. Although I liked the two main characters and their personalities, they could have been developed a whole lot more; instead they are given interesting traits that show up sometimes but are largely ignored in favor of chivvying the characters to their destinat ...more
Sep 09, 2012 PJ rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: want-to-own
First, I should say that I have played and thoroughly enjoyed Fable III. Despite that, I don't think that this book really had much of anything to do with the game, so that didn't really affect my enjoyment of this book.
No one is going to confuse this book with fine literature. There are many predictable plot points, and the character's personalities aren't exactly unique. Despite these failings, it was a very enjoyable read. I think it is perfect for what it is and most video game novels won't
Heather Clawson
The story wasn't bad and the action was pretty well-paced but the writing itself had an immature feel to it. For example, this sentence from Chapter 13 where Thomas and James have been invited to Laird Kreel's mansion: "The mansion was almost more cstle than mansion." Really? I can think of three re-writes of that sentence that would have more flavor, and one of them has to do with sherpas.

On the flip side, it IS a book based on a video game so I guess looking for Pulitzer prize winning prose is
This is actually one of the better media tie-in novels I've read. I don't think you need to know anything about the Fable franchise to read it. It also served its primary purpose, which was to make me curious about the Albion of Fable III (I'd already pre-ordered the game before I picked up the book). The Albion of the book is more interesting than the Albion of the game.

It's a typical coming of age fantasy story, but still a fun read. I particularly enjoyed the framed parts of the narrative, wi
Oct 05, 2010 Stefanie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: fans of the Fable series
For a regular fantasy adventure story, I'd give this three stars, but for one that takes place in the Fable universe, I thought it was rather clever. It managed to capture the general decision making process that takes place in the game. The pace was kind of weird (the title does come up until more that three quarters of the way in), and there were parts that were explained in detail that I didn't really care about. But I'd definitely recommend this to fans of the game series; people who have ne ...more
May 21, 2014 Diana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I fell in love with this book at first sight The tale of rich boy Thomas and his poorer but loyal servant James is facinating and keeps me racing through the pages. Though the only enemy here is balverines. I hoped there would be Hollow Men and stuff. Though Peter had written this book with creativity beyond our imagination. This book is awesome. I love how the book hangs at the end. Peter is a certified exellent writer.
Dec 11, 2010 Alyce rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's really fun and fast to read! Characters remind me of Merlin and Arthur from the Merlin series and it's a plus from my point of view.
I love the idea of the game, though I just can't get hooked on it! (actually with none) and having a book on it was an great idea!
I bought it for my brother (he's no bookworm, but he finished this one in 2 afternoons!) so have to qualify it entertaining, at least.
Joshua Bishop
Dec 07, 2015 Joshua Bishop rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Fable: The Balverine Order was the FIRST video game novel I purchased. Being a huge Fable fan (except Fable II) and a bibliophile, I absolutely loved it.

Although the story seems a bit stale at times and (for me) a tad predictable, it was a very good read. It flowed well and had great character development.
Jessica Buike
Jul 27, 2011 Jessica Buike rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is a fantastic journey into the realm of Albion, the game world of the popular XBox game series Fable. I was worried that since it was geared towards "gamers" that it would be in a juvenile form, but I was happily mistaken!

An excellent read for all those who enjoy a good fantasy novel, this is one book I was glad I stumbled upon.
Forgotten Realms Queen
A fun, easy little book, poor writing at times, but only in that we can see when the writer has thrown something in to advance story or plot.

Complete fluff, doesn't seem to be any real spoilers to any of the Fable games, unless you count the King of Albion being a former Hero.

Just a fun little book if you enjoy the Fable franchise.
Mar 24, 2013 Emily rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fable gamers, fantasy readers, adventure readers
Shelves: adventure, fantasy
A good book - however a little young for my age group. I read this because I loved the game and wanted more insight into the world of Albion. It's got an interesting narrative and great heroes. It didn't draw me into the story completely - I wasn't thinking about it all the time - but I still very much enjoyed it.
Eddie Gibbs
An entertaining and faithful showing of the Fable universe in novel form. The book focuses on the endearing relationship between two likeable, if slightly generic, main characters as they embark on an adventure in typical fantasy style. Despite a few plot contrivances and cliches the book is an entertaining journey through the world of Fable. Just don't expect the next Hobbit.
J. Mauldin
I did not enjoy this as much as I had hoped. The perspective shifts were jarring, and the troupes from the game it is based on ran too deep (to the obvious point of even having the dog, and calling spells for what they are by name). It is not a waste of time at all, there are some good moments, but as a whole I think it gave me the feeling it was written in a hurry.
Michael Alexander Henke
I bought this book for 2 reasons. First, Peter David is the current writer on X-Factor, one of my favorite comics, and secondly because it came with a code for a special weapon. That being said, the book was much better than I expected. Fable isn't known for it's amazing fiction, but Peter David was able to work with it and craft an entertaining story.
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aka David Peters

Peter Allen David (often abbreviated PAD) is an American writer, best known for his work in comic books and Star Trek novels. David often jokingly describes his occupation as "Writer of Stuff". David is noted for his prolific writing, characterized by its mingling of real world issues with humor and references to popular culture. He also uses metafiction frequently, usually to hum
More about Peter David...

Other Books in the Series

Fable (3 books)
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