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Soon I Will be Invincible Paperback – June 10, 2008
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A network of beacons allows ships to travel across the Milky Way at beyond the speed of light. The beacons are built to be robust. They never fail. At least, they aren't supposed to. Learn more
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Top Customer Reviews
"This morning on planet Earth, there are one thousand, six hundred, and eighty-six enhanced, gifted, or otherwise superpowered persons. Of these, one hundred and twenty-six are civilians leading normal lives. Thirty-eight are kept in research facilities funded by the Department of Defense, or foreign equivalents. Two hundred and twenty-six are aquatic, confined to the oceans. Twenty-nine are strictly localized--powerful trees and genii loci, the Great Sphinx, and the Pyramid of Giza. Twenty-five are microscopic (including the Infinitesimal Seven). Three are dogs; four are cats; one is a bird. Six are made of gas. One is a mobile electrical effect, more of a weather pattern than a person. Seventy-seven are alien visitors. Thirty-eight are missing. Forty-one are off-continuity, permanent emigres to Earth's alternate realities and branching timestreams.
"Six hundred and seventy-eight use their powers to fight crime, while four hundred and forty-one use their powers to commit them. Forty four are currently confined in Special Containment Facilities for enhanced criminals. Of these last, it is interesting to note that an unusually high proportion have IQs of 300 or more--eighteen to be exact. Including me.
"I don't know why it makes you evil. It's just what you find at the extreme right edge of the bell curve, the one you'd get if six billion minds took an intelligence test and you looked at the dozen highest scores.Read more ›
The best decision that Grossman made was to focus the story on one super villain and one superhero. By focusing the story so narrowly, Grossman is able to infuse a humanity into these characters that one wouldn't typically associate with archetypes. Narrowing the story also gives Grossman the freedom to explore and poke fun at some of the more hallowed "sacred cows" in comic book storylines, like why do super villains always lose to superheroes, no matter how smart/strong/prepared they are?
While he's certainly willing to overturn the medium's conventions, Grossman clearly has a fondness for the genre. As a result, the skewering never morphs into cynical satire; but, retains an enthusiasm that's completely appropriate for the style. That enthusiasm infects the writing with a playfulness and humor that makes reading Soon I Will Be Invincible a pleasure.
Soon I Will Be Invincible reads so well that it's easy to forget that writing a semi-serious book about a subject as caricatured as superheroes is not an easy task. Consequently, Grossman deserves a lot of credit for creating a wonderful homage to comic books that retains the wide-eyed innocence of the medium while incorporating the humanistic touches of the genre's current writers.
In that way 'Soon I Will Be Invincible' does what Watchmen succeeded to spectacularly at...albeit in a much lighter way.
The book's approach to the world of superheroes is to mix 2 parts conventional superhero story with one part US Weekly. The characters are all stand-ins for other...copyrighted...characters you'll quickly recognize. They depart from their comic book alter egos with the more human portrayals they receive. They are the insecure, impatient, entitled people...all hiding behind agents and publicists...that they would be if they existed in the real world. The main character, Fatale, is an appropriate stand in for us. She never seems to get in the way of the plot and asks all the same questions we might ask if we were in her role.
Her counterpart, Dr. Impossible, is like a cross between Lex Luthor, Dr. Doom and Hannibal Lector. His goals and means are absurd but his motivations are ones that anyone who's been bullied on a playground can understand.
This probably isn't a book for everybody...but then what is? If you've ever sort of wondered if Superman, Batman and Wonder Woman act like a bunch of jerks after the credits roll on an episode of Super Friends then this might be a book for you.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
The contrasting viewpoints of the characters helps keep the story fresh all the way through. The little hints of connected narratives gives this story a feeling of great depth and... Read morePublished 20 days ago by Ben Christensen
A fun read from the perspective of the world's greatest supervillain, as well as the new hero who's been recruited to stop him. Read morePublished 20 days ago by Seangreyson
One of my top-10 favorite books. Grossman uses a unique perspective to parody superhero and comic cliches--and make them feel fresh. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Una Kim
It contains about a third of the plot of a normal novel. The author repeats ideas two or three times, mostly in sequential paragraphs. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Nathaniel Olson
Great premise and interesting subject but felt like the author had trouble towards the middle to the end finishing the book. I won't spoil it but the end was well predictable. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Brian Prater
I wish there was a sequel, but a well developed well thought out novel, it almost makes the the villain redeemable and interesting enough, and if they dived into a bit more into... Read morePublished 4 months ago by Michael Ficken
This is a wonderful and insightful send-up of comic books from someone who clearly knows the genre intimately. Read morePublished 4 months ago by KB