A wildly entertaining first novel about good and evil, narrated by a cape-wearing superhero and a nefarious supervillain.
Doctor Impossible—evil genius, mad scientist, diabolical time-traveler, wannabe world dominator—has just broken out of prison…again. He's tried to take over the world in every conceivable way: doomsday devices (nuclear, thermonuclear, nanotechnological), armies (robot, insect, dinosaur, fungus, fish), mass mind control, even a corporate conquest (Impossible Industries LLC). Each time, he has been foiled. This time, it's going to be different.
Fatale, a gleaming technological marvel built by the NSA as the next generation of warfare, is living in Boston, watching TV and listening to the police scanner. A woman of skin and chrome with a long silver ponytail, she's given the chance every superheroine dreams of: to join a once-famous group of beautiful young heroes, newly reunited to stop Dr. Impossible.
In alternating chapters, we see Dr. Impossible plan his comeback, and we watch the good guys—Fatale, Damsel, Blackwolf, Feral, CoreFire—come together in the face of unspeakable evil.
Featuring a cast of superheroes and supervillains with remarkably human emotions who inhabit a world strangely similar to our own, this is an outrageous adventure with a literary bent—a smart take on power and celebrity, glory and responsibility, and those old standbys, truth and justice.
As I'm sure Grossman is aware, the bar for this kind of narrativethe paradox of the realistic superhero storyhas been set perilously high, not only by comics like Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons's Watchmen and Rick Veitch's Brat Pack, but also by television serials like Heroes and the Spider-Man film franchise, which (when they're not merely treading water) do a pretty good job of conveying the texture and resonance of otherwise two-dimensional characters. Against these monolithic standards, Soon I Will Be Invincible can't completely measure up, but its ambition and persistence in the face of formidable odds make it an admirable addition to the genre. I mean it as the highest possible compliment when I say that it would make a damn good comic book.