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Superheroes Anonymous by Lexie Dunne eARC {4 Stars}

Superheroes Anonymous by Lexie Dunne takes every opportunity to poke fun at the old comic book worlds with superheroes all over the place and the rather poor view on women that was also integral to many of those comics. I had no idea what to expect from Superheroes Anonymous, but I was in the mood for trying something I hadn’t heard anything about and I’m so glad I did! I was at first worried since the main character is called Hostage Girl for how many times she has been kidnapped by super-villains and rescued by superheroes, but this was just the start of the light being shone on how ridiculous many old comic book stories were. Our Hostage Girl is by no means a wilting flower and finds herself in a situation no one expected.

Note: I received an advanced copy of Superheroes Anonymous from the publisher. Some things may have changed in the final version.

Superheroes Anonymous by Lexie Dunne eARC {4 Stars}

Superheroes Anonymous by Lexie Dunne
Published by Harper Voyager on Nov. 18th, 2014
Genres: Adult, Sci-fi
Page Length: 336 pages
How I got my copy: Edelweiss
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Everybody in Chicago has a “superhero sighting” story. So when a villain attacks editorial assistant Gail Godwin and she’s rescued by superhero Blaze, it’s a great story, and nothing more. Until it happens again. And again.

Now, the media has dubbed her Hostage Girl, nobody remembers her real name, and people are convinced that Blaze is just Gail’s boyfriend Jeremy in disguise. Gail’s not so sure. All she knows is that when both Jeremy and Blaze leave town in the same week, she’s probably doomed. Who will save her now?

But when the villains miraculously lose interest, Gail is able to return to her life…until she wakes up strapped to a metal table by a mad scientist who hasn’t read the news. Escaping, and now more than human herself, she’s drawn into a secret underground world of superheroes. She’ll have to come to terms with her powers (and weakness) to make it in the new society, and it’s not easy. After all, there’s a new villain on the rise, and she has her sights set on the one and only Hostage Girl.

4 Stars

Strengths:

  • Superheroes Anonymous takes place in a world were superheroes and supervillains are fairly common. A few decades ago people started getting powers and then starting battling each other with those super powers. Eventually the thrill of the new wore off and now super-powered people are a known part of everyday life. You probably won’t run into them on the street (at least you won’t know you did), but you might spot them from time to time and you’ll definitely follow the superhero gossip sites since they are the new celebrities. It was a lot of fun to read about a world that was pretty similar to the ones from the major comic book worlds, but just this side of ridiculously entertaining.
  • Gail is a strong and delightfully blunt main character. She is put into ridiculous situations because the super villains have taken a strange interest in her, but she speaks her mind and doesn’t tiptoe around any sense of propriety. She also doesn’t stay Hostage Girl for long and soon enough finds herself with some new strengths to add to her arsenal.
  • The romance in Superheroes Anonymous is not actually a full-blown plot line and is only hinted at, but it is pretty adorable. I’m so excited to continue wanting to smash Gail’s face into a certain sweet superhero’s as the series continues ;-).
  • There are so many moments in Superheroes Anonymous where they are clearly poking fun at the tropes of the comic book industry and I just couldn’t help laughing out loud and reading lines to whoever was around me. I was honestly never much a fan of comic books, but satire based on them is quite entertaining!
  • Superheroes Anonymous is written in a light-hearted and fun style. Gail is working hard throughout much of the book, but the reader has a lot more fun than she does. I was always excited for the next snarky encounter and finding out more about the secret underground superhero world.

Weaknesses:

  • There is a HUGE cliffhanger at the end of Superheroes Anonymous that just didn’t feel necessary. It isn’t the sort of “omg what is going to happen next????” cliffhanger that also annoys me but for different reasons. No, this cliffhanger is a “omg that is so unfair gah stupid person is stupid!!!!” where I just want to punch someone. I almost don’t want to read the start of the next book because it will annoy me so much! (I get righteously indignant easily >.>.)
  • Superheroes Anonymous just didn’t give me enough information about what each of the superheroes and villains could do. They all have varying levels of various powers and there didn’t seem to be much of a pattern to them. I must be able to learn everything!
  • While it was clear that Superheroes Anonymous was meant to be making fun of various annoying tropes, there were times when the satire just wasn’t obvious enough for me and instead the dynamics felt vaguely uncomfortable and sexist. I’m taking everything with the assumption that they weren’t meant that way, but it’s hard when that isn’t clear enough from the writing.

Summary:

Superheroes Anonymous is a great book for those of you who love the idea of superheroes but are uncomfortable with the comic book industries murky history when it comes to the treatment of women. Gail is a heroine you have to root for and I seriously wish I could be friends with her. I’m excited to see where her new powers go in book two and the budding romance should be fun ;-). If you hate cliffhangers though, maybe wait until book two is out and then binge!

Anya from On Starships and Dragonwings

Have you read this one? What did you think? Are you excited for it if you haven’t gotten to it yet?
– Anya

 

 Superheroes Anonymous by Lexie Dunne

© 2014, Anya. All rights reserved.

Comments

  1. This sounds like fun to me, but knowing that they’ll be a frustrating ending and sexist-seeming bits, I’m not sure I can make myself start this one!
    Katie @ Doing Dewey recently posted…More YA in Mini-ReviewsMy Profile

    • Completely understandable! I do think that the sexist-seeming times are twisted around nicely, but I get it :). Hopefully book two is even better and I can push the series on you ;-)

  2. I’ve been waiting for a superhero book like this! Definitely going to give it a try – although I may take your advice and wait for Book 2, if I can. ;) Thanks for putting it on my radar!
    Skye @ Skye’s Scribblings recently posted…Looking for Stocking Stuffers?My Profile

  3. I REALLY like the sound of this, but that cliffhanger… Normally, I can deal with them just fine, but if it feels like the kind of betrayal you and other Goodreads reviewers are describing, I better wait for Book 2 before giving it a shot. Great review! :)
    Kel @ Booked til Tuesday recently posted…Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop (INT)My Profile

  4. This sounds like a fun book, but with a bad cliffhanger, I’m definitely tempted to wait until #2 is available.
    Sarah recently posted…The Maze Runner Twitter Event and GiveawayMy Profile

  5. I didn’t enjoy this nearly as much as you. I knew this story was poking fun of tropes the whole time I was reading it, but it just didn’t work for me. Plus I was just bored to death by the endless training scenes, Gail getting the sh*t kicked out of her, and those damn crap cakes! Meh, probably won’t read the sequel.
    Tammy @ Books Bones & Buffy recently posted…WAR STORIES: NEW MILITARY SCIENCE FICTION Edited by Jayme Gates & Andrew Liptak – ReviewMy Profile

    • Aw I’m sorry! I think I’m happy to read training sequences these days since I want to be convinced that the character actually has worked to obtain new skills haha. The crap cakes were a bit strange, I completely agree!

  6. I love the idea of a spoof on old comic books! I’m glad the main character has punk and isn’t just a damsel in distress. I can totally picture a world like that where superheros were stars. I hate cliffhangers too! Thanks for the warning, I might have to wait for the sequel. Oh yay I’m glad the main character gets powers, that makes it so much better!
    Molly Mortensen recently posted…Demons at Deadnight by A&E KirkMy Profile

Trackbacks

  1. […] publication: June 30th 2015 by Harper Voyager Impulse) I really enjoyed the first book, Superheroes Anonymous, for a fun spin on typical comic superheroes, but that cliffhanger KILLED ME so I need to know what […]

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