Monday, March 7, 2016

Book Review: V is for Villain

Release Date: May 20, 2014
Author: Peter Moore
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Length: 336 pages
Source: eGalley via NetGalley

Brad Baron is used to looking lame compared to his older brother, Blake. Though Brad's basically a genius, Blake is a superhero in the elite Justice Force. And Brad doesn't measure up at his high school, either, where powers like super-strength and flying are the norm. So when Brad makes friends who are more into political action than weight lifting, he's happy to join a new crew-especially since it means spending more time with Layla, a girl who may or may not have a totally illegal, totally secret super-power. And with her help, Brad begins to hone a dangerous new power of his own.

But when they're pulled into a web of nefarious criminals, high-stakes battles, and startling family secrets, Brad must choose which side he's on. And once he does, there's no turning back.

Perfect for fans of The Avengers, Ironman, and classic comic books, V is for Villain reveals that it's good to be bad.



Protagonist: This story focuses on Brad Baron, a by with a famous superhero brother and no real powers of his own. Well, that's not exactly true, he does have a superior intelligence and some annoying voices in his head, but no physical powers. Since this story is about a boy who becomes a villain, I was interested to see how the author handled it, and well it's actually handled rather well. The road from hero worshiping lad to villain is actually very believable. Honestly, in a lot of respects I actually agreed with what Brad was doing, there were a few things that were a bit too fr or felt a bit crazy, but most everything was rather rational. While I don't 100% completely agree with who Brad becomes by the end, there's still a lot about him that I would identify with.

Romance: So the romance in this book isn't all that expansive. The romance between Brad and Layla starts off a bit awkward, and in the beginning I didn't know whether or not I would like it. Over the course of the book the romance progresses, but is still kept very tame. It never got overly one sided and neither of the individuals involved did anything creepy thankfully, but there wasn't anything that I felt particularly attached to in the romance.

World-Building: So one of the gimmicks to this book is that there are footnotes providing extra details of world-building. Some of these notes would break up the flow of the story if they would have just been added in, and some of them were really interesting and helped expand this world even more. However, most footnotes felt either superfluous or that they could have just been entered into the main text and not thrown off the story at all. The world-building itself was pretty cool. While in the beginning I just assumed this was a world in which metahumans existed, as the story progressed we learn about their origins and about the truths behind this superpowered world.

Predictability: For most of this book things seemed to be fairly predictable. Things just sort of went how I expected them to as our protagonists entered into their nefarious ways, and somethings just seemed overly obvious. However as the book developed and evolved there were some definite twists that caught me off guard. There are deep dark secrets to this world, things that I never would have guessed if the foreshadowing hadn't been there. Overall, the foreshadowing for larger twists later in the book was kept very slight, there's not much that'll clue you in on what's going on until the author wants you to.

Ending: So this is a standalone, at least from what I can tell it is. However after a rather epic final climax, this book ends on a bit of a cliffhanger. I mean most everything is pretty wrapped up, but there are still a great many things left to explore. I don't know if this author meant to leave so many things up in the air or if he hoped to turn this into a series, but either way, by the end of this book I still had so many questions on my mind and I felt as though Brad's journey was far from over.


For the most part I really enjoyed this book, there were plenty of times I couldn't even set this book down because it was so good. However with some rather superfluous footnotes and an unfinished ending I just couldn't give it five stars.


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