Customer Reviews: Nick Fury, Agent of Shield: Empyre
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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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on September 7, 2000
Give Will Murray credit, he delivers the real goods. When he does the Destroyer or Doc Savage, he delivers the real character. He does the same here with good old Nick Fury. This is the real Nick -- unshaven, tougher than nails, talking through clenched teeth that are gripping a cheap cigar.
We also have thew real SHIELD, complete with helicarrier, Dum Dum Dugan, and Val (way too little of her). This reads like a really, really good comic adventure, and works. I'm willing to accept all the ESP mumbo-jumbo, but then we also have the lamest of all the old SHIELD gags -- the Life Model Decoys (LMDs). How many times can you put up with the "Oh golly, it was really just a lifelike robot" plot twist.
A real neat cover, and interior black and white illos by the artist formerly known as Jaunty Jim Steranko, who is the only guy who could ever really draw Nick.
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on September 12, 2000
For those who don't know, Nick Fury was a comic book character known to many of us thirtysomethings as Sgt. Fury of the Howling Commandos, a forward-looking comic book series if ever there was one. (It presented issues of diversity years before the Civil Rights Amendment, for example.) While you don't have to have been a Sgt. Fury aficionado to like this book, it sure doesn't hurt.
As long as you're willing to accept a little superhero-genre reality fudging, there's a lot to like about this story. Fury and Dum Dum Dugan (his perennial sidekick) are faithfully presented, but are not the main protagonists--that honour goes to a part-Native psi specialist who is well developed over the course of the book, earning the respect of the reader.
It ain't going to make Oprah's book list, as Nick Fury might say, but it's a fun read. Recommended to any fan of Fury or pseudorealistic superhero adventure with an interest in psi-phenomena.
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on August 8, 2000
Will Murray does it again! Tight, authentic characterization and a well-written plot contribute to our favorite hard-bitten WWII vet's adventure. The action is fast and furious and SHIELD has rarely been portrayed better. Fans of the '60s series take note: this is set in modern-day, not during the reign of the Supreme Headquarters International Espionage Law-enforcement Division. High-tech gimmickry and hardboiled dialogue abound in this tour-de-force through the seamy underbelly of the Marvel Universe. I want more!
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on June 16, 2001
I recently uncovered a taped copy of Fox's Tuesday Night Movie, Nick Fury: Agent of SHIELD (1996) starring David Hasselhof as Colonel Nicholas J. Fury, and that started an obession about all the SHIELD characters. After doing a little research on the web I went back to the comic book shop and purchased dozens of old (and expensive) copies of Sgt. Fury and his Howling Commandoes, a war mag featuring Saint Nick before he lost an eye (one of the comics actually explained how it happened). I then went out looking for copies of Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD comic books and found this novel, EMPYRE. I immediatly grabbed and it and bought it. The cover was good, showing Nick and Contessa and Dum Dum Dugan, a LMD (Life Model Decoy) and the Helicarrier and Hydra Viper (played by Sandra Hess in the TV movie with a bad German accent). The novel itself was not like the cover. The story revolves around a plot by some Middle Eastern madman planning to bomb major world cities (including some right here in the good ol' US of A) using passenger jets rigged with Inferno 16 or some such. Nick Fury and his strong man sidekick Timothy Aloysius "Dum Dum" Dugan enlist the help of SHIELD's para-psych devision's head Starla Spacek to predict the whereabout of the these planes using remote viewing (check out the novel PSYCHIC WARRIOR by David Morehouse). Now the author of this novel is a known psychic and I think he tries too hard to intregrate his comic book novel writing (Doc Savage and the Destroyer) with his mind-reading job. But the main character, Starla Spacek, is very well written throughout the novel. It also helps that Starla Spacek resembles the character Kate Neville in the TV movie. If you want a straight Nick Fury story stay with the comics but if you want a story has Nick Fury in it but does not revolve around him, EMPYRE is the best bet. Also check out Christopher Golden's novel CODENAME WOLVERINE for a very good Nick Fury and SHIELD appearence.
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on August 12, 2000
Will Murray has written an enjoyable romp with Nick Fury and his agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. teaming up (albeit briefly) with their foes of Hydra to prevent a madman bent on world destruction. Murray doesn't disappoint fans with his characterizations of the main characters, and the many fun toys that S.H.I.E.L.D. has at their fingertips. The beginning alone is straight from a James Bond movie.
I would love to see Murray return, I loved his works on The Destroyer novel series and comics run, and very much enjoyed the adventures of Nick Fury in this new millenium. If presented right, Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. could be the James Bond or Man from U.N.C.L.E.
Nick Fury fans, buy this book! Adventure fans who like a bit of "suspension of disbelief" in their reading, won't be disappointed.
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on August 8, 2000
This novel was like a spy thriller and Comic Book rolled into one. It had the complete history of Sheild and Hydra for those who may not know the full story or didn't follow the comic. The novel does have one flaw that prevents a five star rating and thats the fact that the novel focuses more on a pshycic Sheild agent more than it does Nick Fury.
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on August 27, 2000
This is probably the best Marvel novel to date. Empyre rivals Peter David's What Savage Beast as the BEST. Fury is not the only focusing point of the book. He has a partner by the name of Starla, whom without, this book would not be possible. Murray's writing technique is like that of David's.
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on August 10, 2001
Only in recent years have I gotten back into the Marvel novels, and even back then I was reading comic books (late 70's & early 80's) I was selective on which ones I've read. So, I really don't remember reading about Nick Fury. So these novels has introduced me to Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. The storyline was highly enjoyable and the cast of characters that were easy to understand and were likeable. I truely enjoyed Will Murray's writing style and sense of humor in which he intregated into the book was excellent. Highly recommend this book to all the fans of Col Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D.
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on April 8, 2004
I read this book in August of 2001. I finished reading it just two weeks before the terrorists hit New York and Washington, D.C. The fact that someone wrote a book talking about terrorists using jet airliners as suicide bombers scared me witless. Even scarier is that this was out for a year before that.
As far as being a good read in and of itself, it is simply escapist literature. At the time I finished it, it was plain fun. Now, I'm not so sure.
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on July 19, 2014
Will Murray has an uncanny sense of what the character was about and found his voice from page one. Murray eerily predicts the use of jumbo jets as a weapon one year before the events on September 11th. Only in this novel it's a new branch of Hydra. The remote viewer character, "Starla" was a new addition that I didn't expect. She added a dimension to the novel that otherwise wouldn't be there; had it been Fury bantering with only his former Howling Commando's buddies. I wish that this novel had done better in the sales department. Murray has a command of the characters that fit perfectly in the spy/action genre. I only hope that with Agents of Shield on TV, that Marvel gives him another opportunity to write a novel in this universe.
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