To get the free app, enter your email address or mobile phone number.
Superheroes Paperback – February 19, 2013
Top 20 lists in Books
View the top 20 best sellers of all time, the most reviewed books of all time and some of our editors' favorite picks. Learn more
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
Premise: A new anthology of fiction based around the title theme.
From other reviews of this book online, I expected to like it a bit more than I did, but I did still enjoy it. Like most anthologies, this was a mixed bag. The first few, especially, I thought were just fine, nothing too exciting. The last one I found long, meandering, annoying and pointless.
In general, I think the target market for this book are people with a casual knowledge of superheroes, but who aren't really hardcore comic fans. For example, I enjoyed The Illustrated Biography of Lord Grimm, which followed the average citizens of a country ruled by a supervillain, and Tonight We Fly, about an aging hero, but these aren't any more inventive or interesting than stories that have already been told with Dr Doom or in Astro City. Not necessarily less interesting either, but I didn't feel like new ground was being broken.
There were some stories I really liked, though. Wild Cards, about a Federal Unit investigating a criminal with a superpower was pretty great, and Dirae, by Peter S. Beagle, was tremendously evocative and had lovely prose. Also Dr. Death vs. the Vampire and Super Family were both pretty solid superhero stories. The Biggest had a great retro style.
I overall enjoyed this collection, but it suffered, for me, from comparison with some of the great comic writing I've read over the years. Also, I found the foreword highly pretentious and it lowered my expectations for the whole enterprise.
Still, some strong stories, some weak, and the majority good but not great.
Admittedly, in the past, a great deal of science fiction was about superheroes. Mutants are superheroes, for example. Poul Anderson's The Sensitive Man about a person who is trained into superhuman abiliites is a story about a superhero. Likewise, Henry Kuttner's Mutant was a wonderful cycle of stories about an oppressed race of telepaths long before the X-Men.
The modern superhero genre is different somehow in being self consciously aware of its own "kitschiness." It also adheres rigorously to the rules of superheroes - superheroes are noble and brave, they are opposed by super villians, they have cool names and costumes, etc.
Where superhero fiction seems to diverge from the comics in spending more time on the nitty-gritty reality of being a real superhero who actually lives. What would it be like to be Superman who is lapsing into a long, long process of dying of old age but cannot die? What would it be like to be the people on the ground in Dr. Doom's kingdom as it is invaded, yet again, by superheroes? What would it be like to be a superhero who is also the father of a teenage girl?
This is an anthology and the quality of the stories vary, undoubtedly according to taste. I found the quality to be uniformly good and the stories entertaining.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Good sale. But it's friggin' STUPID that I have to write a minimum number of words. Crap. Three more to go.Published on May 29, 2013 by Amazon Customer