I'm so on the fence about this one, it's not even funny. Do I love it? Do I hate it? I'm not sure. I do love the book design though, I'll start on a positive. Take a look at that cover. I dare you not to love it.
This is the story of the infamous villain Doctor Impossible as he plays out another scheme to control the Earth. Odd-numbered chapters are told from his perspective and are absolutely riveting, while even-numbered chapters are told by Fatale, a cyborg superhero on the team that's trying to track him down. Her chapters are flat and boring.
Literary novels like this are like watching train wrecks in SLOW MOTION. I have a feeling that it's not going to have a satisfying ending, just literary claptrap in which we all see how terrible the illness or social issue or dog dying is, but there's no resolution or hope or even much conflict, just exploring the issue. Things take forever to happen and all it is is long internal monologuing about the angst of it all. And yet, you can't look away.
Doctor Impossible was the reason I sat through the boredom. I lived for his chapters. He's the only sympathetic character in the book, and although I think that was the point, it didn't endear me to the other half of the story. Doctor Impossible was witty, intelligent, brave... "Savvy" is the word. He knows the story is going to play out exactly like it always has and nothing's going to change, but he keeps on trying, he never gives up.
All the heroes were boring, flat, and annoying, and it was like pulling teeth just to sit through their scenes. They tried to work up some mystique and suspense, but I just didn't care, with the possible exception of Blackwolf (a Captain Ersatz of Batman, so I had to like him) and Mister Mystic (who got just enough attention to make me want more, but not enough for me to know if I actually liked him.)
SPOILER ALERT: The heroes don't do much but complain and fight amongst themselves, but somehow they still beat Doctor Impossible. It's just not fair. END SPOILERS
Really, I just don't know. I was frustrated and enrapt for equal parts. If this sounds remotely like something you might potentially be interested in, read it, think about it, let me know what you decide. Most of the reviews I've read really haven't understood what the book was trying to say any more than I did, and some of them are just mistaken. It's not a parody of superhero literature by any means.
I post weekly reviews of books in all genres, though I have a special affinity for fantasy and YA. Reviews are posted on Fridays or shortly thereafter, are spoiler-free or clearly marked, and feature recommendations for similar books near the end of the review. I make an effort to give exposure to books that are not already highly publicized and/or are not brand new. If you're passing out review copies and think I might like your book, email me!
My name is Fatalis Fortuna, Fate for short. I am currently a student and a part-time librarian. When I'm not working, I occupy myself with all things fictional, be they in print, on television, or on the silver screen; my two cats, Amontillado (after "The Cask of Amontillado," of course), and Alice (after Alice in Wonderland,); and my novel-in-progress, which is of course the next Great American Novel. To my knowledge it will be the first Great American Novel that is YA urban fantasy, and for this I will become both famous and rich. I've been published in both regional magazines and national magazines (Teen Ink, anyone?), but have not yet cracked the professional market.
Feel free to ask for a list of books in my BookMooch inventory. They're there because I want to give them away, don't be shy.