Wonder Woman in novel form

Smart, competent girls yay!

Honestly? Plot? A young woman, Alia, gets in a shipwreck. Diana saves her. It turns out there’s a conspiracy around her, blah blah blah, Diana saves the day. You know the plot – no wheels are being reinvented here.

So what’s the point? The point is: smart competent girls get it done despite incompetent and sometimes outright evil dudes. Warbringer is a fun read and will make you proud to have two X chromosomes. Recommended.

We need more female superheroes

girl who would be king

What’s it about?
There are two teenaged girls.

Bonnie is the good one. Her parents died young, leaving her to grow up in group homes. One night, she discovers she has extraordinary strength. She uses it to rescue a necklace that a bully has stolen and thrown away from another girl; later, she takes care of the bully. She wants to and practices using her strength to help people.

Lola is the bad one, killing her mother, feeling like the world owes her something all the time. She takes whatever she wants – jewelry, clothes, people – not caring about anyone else.

They both have super-powers and are basically unkillable. You know how the story goes from here.

Why should you read it?
Well, that’s a hard question to answer. The story of The Girl who Would be King is good. It has lots of action and moves along at a decent clip. The settings are ok – there are a few that are rich, but many are just kind of there. The characters are the same way: a handful of them feel like people, the rest are one-dimensional.

The big problem is the writing – the actual words on the page. The sentences are clunky. It’s distracting. (Not that I have much to talk about here – my own writing’s not that great. I’m working on it.)

So, should you read it? Eh? Maybe? I can’t really recommend it, but I never did want to put it down.

A Modern Superhero



What’s it about?
Tigerman is about war and superheroes and what if the Iraq and Afghanistan wars bred a superhero from the British troops? What on earth would he be like? Why would he be created? What does that say about Western society? Plot-wise, there’s a soldier, suffering from PTSD-lite, who’s been stationed on a make-believe¬†island near Yemen that is about to environmentally self-destruct. There’s an attack on a local cafe, and a boy asks the soldier to avenge the cafe owner. How does he do that under the nose of a local UN force, and what are the ramifications?

Why should you read it?
Because Nick Harkaway is a pretty awesome author. He’s got the right amount of swagger and touch for narrating international politics. (John le Carre is, literally, his father. It runs in the family.) His stories are funny and touching and in this book¬†he has a sentence where he uses the f-word as every major part of speech. I laughed out loud a number of times. Recommended.