Older Characters in Superhero Media

Readers of The White Knight & Black Valentine Series sometimes ask me why I chose to make my heroes “older.” The superhero genre doesn’t have an age limit: it includes heroes from children to seniors. Just look at the Power Pack or the Justice Society of America. Like most media, though, I’d say it skews young, and the genre has its roots in teen heroes and superpowers as a metaphor for puberty.

With the explosion of live-action superhero films and television starring actors who are human rather than ink on page and therefore age, we’re seeing a few more characters on the older half of the spectrum. Except when CGI makes them look younger. Oh, and those aging actors are rarely women.

But we’re all growing older (unless you’re reading this from a Lazarus Pit), so let’s take a look at those awesome elders of superhero media who don’t let age stop them from saving (or destroying) the world. Continue reading Older Characters in Superhero Media

Turn Back the Pages: Gotham Academy

Turn Back the Pages is a feature where I spotlight a comic that is not fresh and new. It may have come out a few months ago or even a few years ago. Maybe it was hyped and popular, or maybe it was an underappreciated gem. Whatever the case, it’ll be a great comic that’s well worth a read.

I love gothic mysteries. I love Batman. I really should have read Gotham Academy sooner.

This book is full of gothic tropes. Gotham Academy is old, mysterious, and has a dark history. One building is even boarded up and abandoned for secret reasons. The girls’ dorm is possibly haunted. A group dressed in cloaks and masks conducts arcane rituals on campus in the dead of night. There’s even a vampire! (Okay, so he’s a bat-mutant made by science, but he looks super vampiry.) It’s seriously the best. Continue reading Turn Back the Pages: Gotham Academy

New Superhero Fiction (October 2018)

Halloween is over, and though October is a month for spooky horror reads, there were plenty of good superhero novels and novellas released last month. Here are a few that caught my eye. As usual, I haven’t read all of these books personally, so please read the reviews and samples before purchasing. And if you have any recommendations, let me know!

Spectra: A Cynical Superhero

by Amy Sumida

Spectra Cover

They think she’s a superhero. She thinks they’re delusional.

Amara Madison has strange abilities. She can manipulate colors; use them to create illusions, alter auras, and affect the human body in both helpful and harmful ways. She’s not alone either. Amara lives in a secret community of supernaturals in Washington DC. Some of her kind try to help humans. They call themselves superheroes instead of supernaturals. Amara thinks that’s just super-ridiculous. Continue reading New Superhero Fiction (October 2018)

4 Haunting Halloween Reads (that even a wimp like me can’t put down)

I’m a total wimp when it comes to horror. My imagination is so overactive that just watching the preview for a scary movie or reading a recap can freak me out. So when I do read something spooky, it’s because I’ve been sucked in by the amazing atmosphere, characters, or premise.

Like Crimson Peak. It’s terrifying, but I couldn’t resist that gorgeous gothic atmosphere.

Crimson Peak Gif

Here are some books that are undeniably scary yet so good I couldn’t put them down and hide. If you’re looking for an atmospheric Halloween read, look no further. Just don’t blame me for any nightmares. Continue reading 4 Haunting Halloween Reads (that even a wimp like me can’t put down)

Book Recommendation: Rebellion’s Song by J.E. Brand

The battle is over. The heroes lower their weapons as the crowd cheers. The evil overlord has been defeated, and the hero’s people are free.

…what now?

That’s the question asked in Rebellion’s Song by J.E. Brand. Earlier this year, I posted about how much I love The Freedom Game, my sister’s first book. Now, the sequel is out, and I have to gush about how great it is, too.

Rebellion's Song Cover

The rebellion is over. The real fight has just begun… Continue reading Book Recommendation: Rebellion’s Song by J.E. Brand

Book Recommendation: The Freedom Game by J.E. Brand

Hey, guys. I’m busy editing/revising Kill Them All, which is part of the reason I haven’t been posting as frequently lately. But while I don’t have a new book out personally, I have something even better:

A book by my sister.

The Freedom Game Cover

Three years ago, the impossible happened: Ethlynn’s role in life changed from an ordinary slave to an all-powerful sorcerer. Now, she’s seeking to become the apprentice of the very person whom she used to call ‘master’. Why? Her brother and sister’s lives are still on the line. Continue reading Book Recommendation: The Freedom Game by J.E. Brand

Last Week in Superhero Fiction (4/26/18)

Superhero Fiction News Graphic

If you have a Spotify account, check out this superhero-themed playlist made by Damien Benoit-Ledoux for his novel Guardians. Listen to it while reading—or if you ever find yourself actually saving the world and need a soundtrack. 😉

I’ve been seeing a lot of great buzz for Lee Blauersouth’s debut YA novel, Secondhand Origin Stories. You can read a review of it at Spines in a Line, which includes links to excerpts and other reviews on the book’s blog tour.

Nicholas Ahlhelm has the details on The Good Fight 4: Homefront, the latest anthology of superhero short stories from the authors of The Pen & Cape Society. I read the first volume of The Good Fight (which is FREE on Amazon) and enjoyed it, so I’m looking forward to seeing what these authors do next.

Superhero romance fans may find this review of Dusk by Jessica Florence of interest. Charli at Rad Babes Read says its her favorite in Florence’s Hero Society series yet.

ETA: I just saw this cover reveal of the awesome-sounding Superheroes Suck by Jamie Zakian. You can enter a giveaway at the bottom for a free copy of the book and a Starbucks gift card.

Any news I missed? What superhero fiction are you currently reading? Let me know in the comments!