Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone
  • Android

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.

Buy Used
FREE Shipping on orders over $25.
Condition: Used: Acceptable
Comment: The item is fairly worn but continues to work perfectly. Signs of wear can include aesthetic issues such as scratches, dents, and worn corners. All pages and the cover are intact, but the dust cover may be missing. Pages may include limited notes and highlighting, but the text is not obscured or unreadable.
Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See all 2 images

Soon I Will Be Invincible: A Novel Hardcover – June 5, 2007

4.1 out of 5 stars 298 customer reviews

See all 12 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
New from Used from
"Please retry"
"Please retry"
$3.57 $0.01

Featured Titles in Fiction
Nine Women, One Dress: A Novel
Nine Women, One Dress: A Novel
Nine Women, One Dress: A Novel
click to open popover

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The realm of comic book heroes and villains gets a dose of realism in this whimsical debut from game design consultant Grossman. The story shifts between the perspectives of Doctor Impossible, a brilliant scientist turned world's greatest menace, and Fatale, a lonely cyborg and the newest addition to the venerable group of heroes known as the Champions. Though he's been out of commission for a while, Doctor Impossible hatches a scheme to knock the planet out of orbit ("As the Earth grows colder, my power becomes apparent, and the nations submit," he reasons). Meanwhile, Champions leader Corefire goes missing, and Fatale has to learn the ropes of superherodom as the conventional climactic showdown (at Doctor Impossible's secret lair) draws near. However fantastical, the characters (including a "genetic metahuman" and "an elite fairy guard") are thoughtfully portrayed, with Fatale—stuck in a perpetual existential crisis—bemused over the Champions' purpose, and Doctor Impossible wondering "whether the smartest man in the world has done the smartest thing he could with his life." Grossman dabbles in a host of themes—power, greed, fame, the pitfalls of ego—in this engrossing page-turner, broadening the appeal of an already inviting scenario. (June)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Bookmarks Magazine

Austin Grossman, Berkeley grad student, game designer, and comic-book connoisseur, offers a fresh take on the hidden realm of contemporary superheroes. Critics compare the novel favorably to Jonathan Lethem's Fortress of Solitude, the prime-time, sci-fi soap opera Heroes, and the animated big-screen hit The Incredibles. Although the plot and Grossman's sense of humor wear thin for some critics, Soon I Will Be Invincible is certainly a worthwhile diversion, a flight of fancy with heart, and the perfect vehicle for a sequel. Even Impossible's voice has the ring of truth-in a world-weary, villainous sort of way, of course: "Once you get past a certain threshold, everyone's problems are the same: fortifying your island and hiding the heat signature from your fusion reactor." Impossible's aphorism contains as relevant a metaphor for life as a reader is likely to find anywhere these days.
Copyright © 2004 Phillips & Nelson Media, Inc.

New York Times best sellers
Browse the New York Times best sellers in popular categories like Fiction, Nonfiction, Picture Books and more. See more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Pantheon; 1 edition (June 5, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0375424865
  • ISBN-13: 978-0375424861
  • Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.1 x 9.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (298 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #468,728 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Shannon Phillips on August 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Look, I'm not going to spend a lot of time telling you why you should read this book. Here's how it starts:

"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 ›
Comment 53 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback
It's pretty clear that Austin Grossman has spent a lot of time reading comic books. Only someone who has spent countless hours reading Miller, Moore, Byrne, Stern, Gaiman, et. al. would be able to take comic book conventions and turn them into a great piece of literary fiction. Fortunately for all of us, Soon I Will Be Invincible is proof that Grossman spent his time, and learned his lessons, well.

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.
Comment 29 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
By thersites on November 26, 2008
Format: Paperback
I'm amazed by the negative reviews, and glad to see them in the minority. I found this book a delight, and was amazed to see it was a first novel. The book consists of two intertwined stories - one told by a super-villian, the other by a new super-hero. I found the super-villian chapters a total delight, a real joy - the super-hero chapters are interesting, but much less so - that's why i give 4 stars instead of 5. Overall definitely a very good and fun read.
Comment 30 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Soon I Will Be Invincible is more or less the father of modern superhero literature, specifically that new category of storytelling: capepunk. Capepunk stories are those tales which dissect the nitty-gritty storytelling of superhero stories and ask what they'd be like in the real world.
Some capepunk stories are quite optimistic like Wearing the Cape, others pessimistic like Sad Wings of Destiny, and a few are a mix like Confessions of a D-List Supervillain. Soon I Will Be Invincible is one of the latter. It presents a world exactly like the kind in comic books but pulls back the curtain to reveal how much goes on to make the stories in superhero stories tick.

Half of the book is from the perspective of Doctor Impossible, an aging middle-aged supervillain who is halfway between Lex Luthor and Doctor Doom. The world's smartest man, he suffers Malign Hyper-Cognition Disorder (i.e. he's an evil genius), which compels him to try and take over the world. He's aware, on some level, all of his plans are going to fail but is compelled by his ridiculously potent intellect that he must try anyway. It's, in a weird way, one of the more authentic portrayals of mental illness I've encountered in fiction as it is treated with sympathy and care despite the utter ridiculousness of the condition.

The book gives a sympathetic take to its lead even if it never shies away from the fact his actions are self-destructive and foolhardy. He doesn't even have anything he wants to do once he takes over the world, it's merely something which he must do. This, of course, is part of the book's delightful out-of-universe subtext.

Doctor Impossible tries to take over the world because he is a comic-book villain and that is what comic-book villains do.
Read more ›
Comment One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Recent Customer Reviews

What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?