HEROES' CALLING REVISED EDITION by Edge Celize

HEROES' CALLING REVISED EDITION

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KIRKUS REVIEW

This ambitious novel, written mostly in the form of a play, combines action, mythology, religion and anime.

Edge is an Asian-American teen from Brooklyn who, as a child, discovers he can harness heat energy and shoot fireballs. He possesses this power as the result of a war waged between Jehovah and Lucifer, in which one of Lucifer’s generals turned against his master and fought on the side of goodness. Details of this war were apparently suppressed by the Church, as was the fact that Adam was an angel and Eve a demon. These bold assertions are typical of the novel’s incredibly complex, often difficult-to-follow plot. As Edge grows up, he finds that many of his close friends have extraordinary powers, too, including the ability to teleport. This connection to friends with superpowers proves to be fortuitous, since Lucifer’s generals have returned to Earth to reclaim the scattered, mystical sources of their power. The underlying scenario has potential, but unfortunately, and for no clear reason, the novel is written like a play, with the action in brackets. With admirable consistency, this technique is sustained across hundreds of pages, although it doesn’t quite benefit the telling of the tale. The dialogue is perfunctory and trite—“Raven: I got a plan, and it’s an awesome plan!”—and the stage-direction rendering of the novel’s action tends to dampen the wonder of what could be spectacular scenes, especially Edge becoming an angel in heaven, the fights between angels and demons, and even a nuclear blast. The sketches of action struggle to leave an impression: “[The War Commandant leaves the office and gets into a helicopter that takes him to an unnamed building in a field of grass. He exits, enters the facility, and gets on an elevator that takes him a few floors down. The elevator opens into a room with a person strapped to a table with his arms and legs spread apart.]” Also, in the repetitive fight scenes, main characters call out their signature moves before executing them, as in a video game or anime—parallels young readers may or may not enjoy.

Difficult to read and understand; the presentation squashes an intriguing premise.

Pub Date: June 7th, 2011
ISBN: 978-1456767624
Page count: 452pp
Publisher: AuthorHouse
Program: Kirkus Indie
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