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Hungry Gods by J.D. Brink is the first in a series called Identity Crisis. The story follows the antics of a teenaged super hero who just wants to make it big. In a world of caped and masked superheroes who are called by the government to solve problems created by real life monsters and villain, Spitball is a low level superhero. All he dreams about is using his super-speed powers to launch him into a life of fame and to secure his spot in the Phenomenal Five, the most famous team of superheroes. After fighting off a monster that was terrorizing his town, this little bit of fame leads to a military official to request his services. Little did Spitball know, he was entering a fight that might be too big for his skills. As the story unravels, Spitball is faced with a series of terrors, intrigue, and conflicts between his expectations and realities about what being a superhero is.
This novel improved for me after I accepted the costumed superheroes functioning as a part of the real life plotline. It was bewildering and frustrating in the beginning, but once accepted the plot developed nicely. The premise for the story where a naïve fame-hungry young superhero enters a fight too big for him was actually pretty interesting. It created room for Spitball to learn about the reality of being a superhero and learn from it. Unfortunately, I really felt like he hadn’t learned anything from the experience and was still like an overzealous puppy at the end. I found this extremely disappointing because Spitball’s naiveté was difficult to hear. I did however, like phenomenal five characters that Spitball is able to meet and the background on the relationship between those characters. The superheroes vs. zombies-like premise in itself was unique. This is mostly an action filled story about superheroes fighting off an unknown threat to the public. Ultimately, while I didn’t like Spitball’s character, there was a lot of plot development, action, and a hint of what’s to come in the future novels.
The narration by Todd Menesses was well done. He captured the voices of the different characters really well. He was able to capture the feelings and the situation that the characters were throughout the novel. He also hit Spitball’s voice straight on. It was great. The production quality was good. I would recommend this story to anyone who likes superhero, action stories.
Audiobook was provided for review by the narrator.
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11 of 15 people found this review helpful
Two things I must admit starting out: I love superheroes, and I (mostly) hate horror flicks. Well, not all horror flicks, but I don't care for most things zombie. Still, the "superheroes for adults" moniker in the synopsis it looked like this might be a little different from the run-of-the-mill superhero book. Most of those that aren't from the major comic lines tend to be all about being a villain, so a book about the heroes would be a nice change of pace.
I have to say that while it doesn't quite live up to the "for adults" part of the description, this book was well worth my time. I say it is not quite "for adults" because Spitball (our main character) is VERY immature, and that was on purpose. You needed someone with fresh eyes to tell this story (no, it's not first person, but it is definitely first and foremost about him) so the newbie (and wannabe) superhero who needs lots of things explained to him makes a good central character. By immature, I mean he's a horn-dog who is a stereotypical Millennial (or at least what pop culture would tell us is the stereotype) who is all about image and social media followers.
Normally I'm not into the zombie story because it is less a sci-fi story and more a disaster survival story. Even other comic book zombie stories (like Marvel Zombies, which had like a dozen volumes) never thrilled me. This time around, though, the focus stays more towards the sci-fi realm. There's plenty of comic book tropes thrown in for good measure, but the way they are used kept me focused on the heroes and not on the possible apocalypse survival angle.
I loved Todd Menesses' narration for the story. While it wasn't groundbreaking, his style felt a lot like a narrator to a comic book cartoon or a voice-over guy in a movie trailer. It tended to keep the action moving and the tension levels high, and that really fit the story. His style might not have been as effective if the story was a long one with lots of fast and slow movements, but for a story of this length and almost constant intensity it really worked.
I noticed that this book is labeled as Book 1 of a series, even though to date no more have been released. My comment to that: please don't stop here. I'd love to see where this goes.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful