- Series: Ace Science Fiction
- Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Ace; Reprint edition (June 28, 2011)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0441020534
- ISBN-13: 978-0441020539
- Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1 x 6.7 inches
- Shipping Weight: 7 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,196,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Countdown (Ace Science Fiction) Mass Market Paperback – June 28, 2011
Attention Science Fiction Fans
Man vs. machine, humans vs. aliens, paranormal activities – discover the best of science fiction with these collectible books. Learn More.
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About the Author
GREG COX is The New York Times bestselling author of numerous books and short stories. Besides the novelizations of 52 and INFINITE CRISIS, he has also written books and stories based on such popular series as ALIAS, BATMAN, BUFFY, DAREDEVIL, FARSCAPE, GHOST RIDER, IRON MAN, ROSWELL, SPIDER-MAN, STAR TREK, UNDERWORLD, XENA, X-MEN, and ZORRO.
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Top customer reviews
Following sidekicks and understudies, we see the pratfalls and missteps taken by such luminaries as Jimmy Olsen (who has mysteriously developed essentially-useless powers when watching a New God die), Mary Marvel (who gets Black Adam's powers and makes a great idiotic, super-powered murderer, Harley Quinn (about whom I cannot say anything bad, as she's the best part of the book and is dead-on to her character at all times, being essentially unchanged despite the travails she undergoes), Jason Todd (was anyone unhappy with him being dead?), Donna Troy (who seems to be along the ride purely to save Todd's life when his homicidal tendencies continually get him in trouble), and Holly Robinson (the reject Catwoman who cannot seem to assert herself ever).
Most are linked in unlikely pairings for whatever random mission the universe seemed to assign them. Jimmy ends up on Apokolips while Troy and Todd take a tour of the multiverse seeking the Atom. Holly and Harley join Amazon bootcamp on Themyscira. Mary Marvel tours the planet and murders various people in amusing ways for minor or perceived violations of her personal code. Sadly, the stories jump around so much you cannot get into any of them. The fact that we are not seeing the headliners of the DCU does not help at all. We get occasional glimpses of them, though most of those are of the various alternate reality versions encountered by Todd and Troy with their Monitor tour guide.
This story might have been good as a comic series but fell flat as a novel with all the storylines coming together in a pretty clunky fashion to wrap things up.
Basically, a Monitor guides Donna Troy and Jason Todd (can we please either figure these two out or get rid of them?) on a quest for the Atom, missing since Identity Crisis. The Atom is the key to a plot by Darkseid to take over the universe (of course).
Meanwhile, Jimmy Olson starts developing strange powers when he is in danger, and Holly Robinson meets Harley Quinn at some women's shelter trying to train new Amazons.
These convoluted plotlines all come together at the end, but this was probably better left as a comic series instead of trying to cram the main parts into a novel.
First, let me say, I've heard that the comic book version of this story was poorly reviewed, but this is not the same story.
With that out of the way, I'll start gushing :) I'd never even heard of Donna Troy, Holly Robinson, or Mary Marvel before, but the latter two turn out to be profoundly interesting. Their journeys are both engrossing to say the least, and sooo unpredictable. I couldn't even compare Mary Marvel's quest to any other superhero it is so unique. Both Mary and Ray Palmer (the Atom) had me misty-eyed in multiple scenes.
The big final battle is a little odd, and only scarcely involves the main protagonists of this book, but the character development is really the strongest I've ever seen in a superhero story.
I highly recommend the GraphicAudio adaptation, which is more a play than AudioBook as they utilize a cast of a dozen professional actors, and pro sound effects with amazing results.
UPDATE: I should probably mention Jimmy Olsen too, since he's technically the star here. Let's just say I always liked him, but had low hopes about his contributions to this story. It far surpassed my expectations, but it's more odd than creative, so of the four intertwined stories, I enjoyed his least. Like Donna Troy (Wonder Woman's former protege) and Jason Todd (Batman's former protege), Jimmy Olsen's circumstances change, but he's basically the same guy by the end. With Mary Marvel and Holly Robinson, their journeys have changed them irrevocably.