Friday, 11 September 2015

Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond

Lois Lane: Fallout by Gwenda Bond is a licensed fiction novel set in it's own version of the DC universe. As should be obvious from the title, it's about Lois Lane, the reporter will work with Clarke Kent (aka Superman) at the Daily Planet when she grows up. It's set when she's in high school and has just moved to Metropolis with her family, now that her army general dad has gotten a permanent posting. It's not quite set in the same universe as any other Superman property that I'm aware of; it puts teen Lois in our near future.

Lois Lane is starting a new life in Metropolis. An Army brat, Lois has lived all over—and seen all kinds of things. (Some of them defy explanation, like the near-disaster she witnessed in Kansas in the middle of one night.) But now her family is putting down roots in the big city, and Lois is determined to fit in. Stay quiet. Fly straight. As soon as she steps into her new high school, though, she can see it won’t be that easy. A group known as the Warheads is making life miserable for another girl at school. They’re messing with her mind, somehow, via the high-tech immersive videogame they all play. Not cool. Armed with her wit and her new snazzy job as a reporter, Lois has her sights set on solving this mystery. But sometimes it’s all a bit much. Thank goodness for her maybe-more-than-a friend, a guy she knows only by his screenname, SmallvilleGuy.

Fallout was a fun read, which is pretty much what I expected from it. Lois is the new girl at school and sees herself as a permanent outsider because her family moves so much. Despite this, she quickly makes friends and finds an underdog to defend. We also see her coming into her own as a junior journalist (junior as in, it's kind of a high school programme).

When I was adding this book to Goodreads, I couldn't help but notice a review in which someone was complaining that Superman/Clarke wasn't in the book (a great disappointment to that reviewer). Given that complaint, I was quite surprised at how much SmallvilleGuy was in the story. He might not have shown up at Lois's school in person but he was absolutely the second most prominent character in the story — Lois spends a lot of time chatting with him online.

Fallout was a very self-contained book and I don't think you even had to know the whole Lois Lane/Clarke Kent schtick to enjoy it. (But surely everyone knows that right? If not, you do now!) I am much less in touch with the DC universe/s than I am with the Marvel cannon and I had no trouble understanding what was happening. It's really just a YA science fiction novel that happens to have two popular characters at the centre of it (and a bunch of new characters who are basically just ordinary high school kids).

I enjoyed Fallout and I will definitely be reading the sequel when I can get my hands on it. Anyone after a fun YA read with a bit of creepy conspiracy and a whole lot of kick-arse heroine thrown in should absolutely try to track it down. My copy was a US import (that may have circumnavigated the globe) but apparently it's coming out in the Commonwealth in March for easier access.

4.5 / 5 stars

First published: May 2015, Switch Press
Series: Yes. Book 1, book 2 is coming, beyond that not sure. Also, obviously set in a DC universe
Format read: Hardcover. *GASP*
Source: Present

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