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Crimson Son (Crimson Son Universe Book 1) Kindle Edition
|Length: 420 pages||Word Wise: Enabled||Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled|
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Top Customer Reviews
For me, this is my first foray into superhero fiction (though I keep meaning to lay hands on Landon Porter's Descendants series). At first, I was a little leery: the Spider-Man movies have covered my RDA of angsty super-white-boys until about 2025 - and we all know there is no angst like teen angst.
In this case, it's coming from Spencer Harrington, the powerless son of the world's greatest hero (well, almost-powerless: that boy can shake off traumatic brain injuries like most of us can walk off a charley-horse.) But we start out here with an intriguing premise: what's it like to be one of the Aunt Mays and Mary Janes of the super-verse? What kind of life can you have when you're every villain's dream hostage – and how do you avoid resenting the super-spouse or -parent whose need to protect you has basically turned you into their prisoner?
And yes, there is teen angst, and a few moments of willful buttheadery (I imagine living in permanent solitary at the North Pole doesn't really help the whole social-skills thing), and one or two terrible decisions. But as great as it is to ask the question, "how can a normal kid hold his own in a super-powered world?", I'm even more delighted with the author's answer: "by making friends, using his heart and skill, and relying on the help of good people – supers and not-so-much – to get the job done." Think Big Hero 6, if Baymax were a giant homicidal bug-mech named Cuddles.
But as much as I like what's here in the story, I almost appreciate it more for what's missing. There's no love interest, for one thing (which isn't to say there's no leading lady - and let me say here that I am SO THIRSTY for more stories like this, where guys and gals can have a rock-solid friendship, Captain-America-and-Black-Widow-style, without all the will-they/won't-they business!) No DBZ-esque "I will defeat you with the power of my rage" special-snowflakery. And apart from a lamentably vapid fat lady and one villain's penchant for Alec-Baldwin levels of petulant cruelty, no 'types', either. The characters feel like real people – and more than that, they treat each other like real people. Nobody is the axis of the universe, here. Nobody is unimportant.
So if you're wondering what the trade-off is for all the gorgeous comic artwork you don't get in a novel, I think that's it right there. Sure, there's still building explosions and car crashes and narrow escapes and super-gadgetry and possibly even a cape – but there's also that deeper stuff that characterizes (what I consider) the very best superhero stories, like The Incredibles and Watchmen. We have time to meditate on what happens to these super-people when they're used up and broken, and to the regular people who have to live in their shadow. We have room to consider what separates a good parent from a good-intentioned one, and how to let go of somebody you shouldn't have had to lose in the first place, and why we keep wanting what we can't have. We have a super-verse where the heroes don't all wear spandex, and the villains aren't all bad people.
As it happens, this is a first novel, with some of the challenges that first novels have: I feel like it could be about 10% leaner, and I encourage you to give it 50 pages to really hit its stride. But boy, if this is what a first novel can be - if this guy can pack this much action and drama and humor and heart into a freaking debut - then you definitely want to be caught up and ready before he drops his second. I'll save you a spot in line.
Now Spence is on the run from The Black Beetle, the bad guy- with nothing but his wits and the help of friends. Along the way he stumbles upon some amazing secrets- the kind people will kill to keep secret.
Spencer is a wonderfully written character, at times an acerbic and arrogant smart-aleck, at others a hurting and painfully young man who desperately misses his mother.
Crimson Son's plot is well developed and alternates nicely between action and narrative. The dialogue is strong and realistic and the book packed with drama and humor.
Spencer’s a great main character to spend a book with. He’s smart, resourceful, and has a powerful will of his own. He also has the flaws of many young men that keep him interesting and fun to read.
This story worked well for me overall. I liked the pacing, the unfolding of the overall mystery surrounding his father, the Black Beetle, and the various government programs that created these “super” humans. One interesting thing Linton does well as correspond these weapons with events from our own timeline, creating an alternative world that is both unique, but easily identifiable.
Overall, if you’re a fan of the superhero genre, or you just like good storytelling, I think you’re going to enjoy Crimson Son. I know I did and I’m encouraging my friends to read it as well.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
for a review, are awsome books and in my opinion could easily be made into wonderfully exciting movies, I wouldn't...Read more
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