25 July 2011

Will Supervillains Be on the Final? by Naomi Novik

Leah is a superhero prodigy and there is a lot of pressure on her as she begins classes at Liberty Vocational.  Liberty is a special college for superheroes to master their powers, and Leah's acceptance into the school at sixteen is pretty exceptional.  Leah just wants to be accepted (and maybe noticed by the cute guy in her dorm!), but her lack of control over the use of her powers keeps causing trouble for her.  The reader learns that there is a supervillain in their midst -- isn't there always? -- who happens to be an arch-rival of the school's adviser.  Armed with her roommate and one friend, will Leah be able to figure out who the bad guys are, and control her powers so that she can become a force for good?

Predictable and safe, filled with the character types of traditional manga, this book is sure to please manga readers, but might not be quite as popular with comic book and superhero aficionados.  And yet, though I didn't expect it, this book became my superFUN read of the summer!  I loved it way more than I was anticipating, and I can't wait for more!  Recommended to all ages and readers of all types, especially as an introduction to a format with which "traditional" readers might be uncomfortable.  I'm serious; go ahead, give it a try!

Reviewed by kate the librarian.

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