Classic superheroes like Batman and Spider-Man are the subjects of the biggest blockbuster films, but the genre has had an impact on prose fiction as well. Here are four novels, two for adults and two for younger readers, that transport the reader to a comic book world of superheroes and fantastic deeds.
|Hero by Perry Moore (Hyperion, Aug.)||The Return of Meteor Boy by William Boniface (HarperCollins, Feb.)||Karma Girl by Jennifer Estep (Berkley, May)||Soon I Will Be Invincible by Austin Grossman (Pantheon, June)|
|Author:||Moore was producer of the film, Chronicles of Narnia. This is his first novel.||Boniface, a pen name, is a veteran kids' author.||Estep is a reporter for a daily newspaper.This is her first novel.||Grossman is a game designer and graduate student. This is his first novel.|
|Setting:||The fictional town of Metro City||The fictional town of Superopolis||The fictional city of Bigtime, N.Y.||A remote special facility for enhanced criminals and Manhattan|
|Plot:||Thom Creed, a gay teen growing up in homophobic Metro City and the son of a disgraced superhero, discovers his own superpowers and heroic calling.||In Superopolis, everybody has some kind of superpower, even goofy ones—except Ordinary Boy.||Jilted by her two-timing superhero fiancé, reporter Carmen Cole vows to expose the secret identities of all superheroes.||An evil genius, Dr. Impossible, plots revenge against the Champions, a team of superheroes.|
|Excerpt:||"Uberman dove down from the stars ready for battle, his body aimed, his muscles poised and rippling under his costume. His cape and long hair moved in silky waves behind him as he flew."||"Being a kid with no superpower in a town where everyone has a superpower can make you feel bad enough all by itself. I guess gym class was invented to rip away any remaining shred of dignity."||"[Karen] ripped his shirt open the rest of the way, revealing a blue spandex suit with a giant M in the middle of it. My mouth dropped open."||"Once I wore a cape in public, and fought battles against men who could fly, who had metal skin, who could kill you with their eyes."|