The Superhero Handbook: A “non-fiction” review

The Superhero Handbook by Michael PowellIt might be easy to forget, but superheroes are not born super. In fact, they’re pretty normal at first. That’s why some of them, especially those lacking a Fortress of Solitude with a chatty hologram version of their biological father, need a little help learning the ropes. That’s where The Superhero Handbook (2005) by Michael Powell comes in.

Did you know that as a counterpoint to their impressive superhero exploits, many heroes spend their teen years as bumbling goofball misfit loners with some high-end eccentricities? That’s because there’s a fine balance between Superhero Awesomeness and Nerd Quotient—the apparent dorkiness that keeps a superhero’s identity safe. For instance if you wear glasses, constantly adjust them, and enjoy wearing t-shirts with words that aren’t brand names or band names, you might be a superhero waiting to happen.

Whether you are naturally amazing, have been sent here from a distant dying solar system, or just enjoy fooling around with radioactive slurry, this handy book can tell you everything you need to know about becoming a superhero—and saving the world. Broken into chapters with titles like Dreams of Destiny, Denting the Sidewalk, and You and Your Total Image this book includes everything you need to know and crucial advice about your early beginnings, finding a mentor, creating a persona, dealing with a fatal flaw and even how to decide if it’s time to hang up that cape. And, for any dark heroes in the crowd, there is also a section on the pitfalls of using your powers for evil. One being that stupidity or pride will always prevent super villains from fulfilling their true potential.

Now, I know what some of you are thinking: There aren’t really superheroes out there, and they certainly wouldn’t use how-to manuals if there were, but isn’t it better to play it safe when the future of the human race could be hanging in the balance?

Possible Pairings: Soon I Will Be Invincible by Austin Grossman, Fracture by Megan Miranda, Watchmen by Alan Moore, Vicious by V. E. Schwab, The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
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Sound good? Find it on Amazon: The Superhero Handbook

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