THE ALL-NEW, ALL-DIFFERENT AVENGERS: The Magnificent Seven by Mark Waid and Adam Kubert is reminiscent of the kind of relaunch I’ve seen the Justice League do a couple of times—a new team of heroes (including the new Nova, Ms. Marvel, the Vision and the female Thor) forms in response to a threat and so as nobody’s currently using the Avengers name … (no, I’ve no idea what happened to the old team). There are some fun lines and good team interactions, but counterbalanced by one of the villains, Warbringer, being a pompous ass (he’s a bad clone of DC’s Mongul—and I hate Mongul), the Vision getting his feelings turned off (this is neither an original nor a good idea) and just … I don’t know, while I liked a lot of Waid stuff most of his team book stories feel off somehow. Overall, though, more fun than not.
THE MANY ADVENTURES OF MIRANDA MERCURY: Time Runs Out by Brandon Thomas and Lee Ferguson is a kind of SF pulp tribute reminiscent of Alan Moore’s Tom Strong, but with a black teenage girl as the hero, herein attempting to do as many heroics as possible before a virus introduced by her greatest enemy takes her out. This is one I liked, but wanted to like more than I did — the individual adventures are good, but the story arc as a whole is rather depressing, and the effort to leave on a high note didn’t work. Cover by Ferguson, all rights to current holder.
I also wanted to like AN ACCIDENT OF STARS: Book One of the Manifold Worlds much more than I did, as I’m a fan of author Foz Meadow’s blogging. The story has a teenage Aussie (Meadows’ homeland) unintentionally following a “world walker” into an alternate realm and getting involved with both the people and the politics there — but while the characters were well executed, nothing about the politics or the struggle felt very interesting. I did like that Meadows created a world where which gender you sleep with is irrelevant (the world walker comments she feels much more at home there than when she lived in Margaret Thatcher’s England) and the heavy preponderance of women in the cast, but I couldn’t get more than halfway through the book. While it’s not Meadows’ fault, the sloppy formatting (missing scene breaks different speakers shoehorned into one paragraph) didn’t help.