This is a superhero story for the post-punk era: Live fast, die young, and take over the world.
Unfortunately, it feels like a book with several chapters missing. In one scene, Marvin is training to join The Core, an elite group of superpowered heroes, and then, within a few dozen pages, he’s the most wanted criminal in the entire city. Characters sleep together and then try to kill each other. It’s hard to fault a book for being too exciting or having too many surprises, but this is the rare fantasy novel that could use a few more blocks of plot exposition. One of the biggest secrets in the book is revealed offstage, between the last chapter and the epilogue. The novel has the same fast pacing, actually, as an early superhero comic, although older comic-book fans may be shocked at the sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll packed into a 264-page story. One character has the power to send a person into an altered state, and she has a steady stream of customers looking for a fix. Another is a Paris Hilton–esque socialite who hardly bothers with a secret identity—perhaps it would slow down her lifestyle.
While these characters might not be patient enough to read a 264-page book, they’re so memorable that readers might wish their story could have lasted a little longer, at least another chapter or two. (Adventure. 12-18)