Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Book Review -- Heroine Complex

Today we have a recent release from Sarah Kuhn. It's the girl power superhero(ine) novel Heroine Complex.

The story takes place in modern day San Francisco. 26-year-old Evie Tanaka grew up with her best friend Annie Chang. But after an attempted demonic invasion of the city one day led to people getting superpowers, Annie found her true calling: superhero. Adapting the pseudonym Aveda Jupiter, she trained rigorously, honing her body into a deadly weapon. Ever since then, she's been fighting demons with the help of her loyal assistant Evie (and looking great while doing it!).

As the story opens, Evie is helping Aveda fight off a battalion of demon cupcakes at a local bakery. During the battle, Aveda injures her ankle, forcing her to take an extended leave of absence. Being the good friend that she is, she strong-arms Evie into taking her place with a magical illusion that will make everyone see her as Aveda while the latter recuperates. Despite wanting no part of this, Evie goes along with it and, despite some hiccups, manages to do a decent job of impersonating her friend. But it isn't long before Evie reveals her own superpower: fire. She can generate fireballs and incinerate enemies. While this seems cool to everyone watching her, she is actually terrified of the power and desperately wants to get rid of it. Fortunately for her, Aveda is all too happy to take it off her hands using a potentially dangerous spell.

However, Evie comes to realize she has bigger problems than fire. A new breed of smarter, more evolved demons has begun invading San Francisco. And this time they seem to have a plan in place for conquering Earth. And if that wasn't bad enough, Evie must deal with more human problems such as her growing feelings for brooding scientist Nate, as well as Aveda's increasing demands and her responsibility as a big sister. Can Evie find the courage to face supernatural enemies? Will she embrace her power? And will she ever learn to stand up for herself?

Heroine Complex is a delightful adult (and I do mean adult) read. Sarah Kuhn has packed this story with a strong ensemble of colorful female characters. You'll meet every from super heroines to bitchy bloggers to tough lesbians and even a demon princess. If you like empowering female role models, this is the book for you. 

This book is also quite imaginative. I mean, where else are you going to find demon cupcakes? Kuhn has gone out of her way to create a colorful San Francisco that comes alive with refreshing characters and locations that are their own characters.

On another note, I'm glad to see an adult urban fantasy story. Not everything has to be family-friendly like Harry Potter. Evie alone drops enough F-bombs to level a small village, and I enjoyed every vulgar exclamation that came out of her head.

Bottom line: this is easily a five-star book.


No comments:

Post a Comment