Monday, March 12, 2018

Batman Nightwalker Marie Lu- Book Review

There has been a pleasant series created by DC taking the very famous characters and placing them before they become heroes and are still teenagers. The first was on Wonder Woman right after the release of the movie and now Marie Lu has come out with a Batman one.

In this book, Bruce Wayne has just turned 18 and has now inherited his family’s fortune as well as Wayne Enterprises. He has largely been protected from the media because he was underage, but now that he is 18, his movements in Gotham have become front page news. This is a bit of fun, except on the night of his birthday when Wayne crashes his brand new and highly expensive car and is forced to clean floors in Arkham Asylum.

As he begins mopping, he is harassed by the prisoners there except by a quiet girl who is also 18. She seems too young to be there and has not spoken a word to anyone until Bruce passes her cell. She and Bruce begin a conversation and a relationship, but can Bruce trust a criminal in Arkham?

At the same time, there is a group running around Gotham robbing and killing the rich. Bruce is rumored to be the next on their hitlist. Is the girl connected to all this? (Hint: yes)

One of the biggest difficulties with the book is it is not a “Batman” book, it is a Bruce Wayne book. The Bat does not make an appearance in this book, so the title is pretty misleading.

Marie Lu knows how to tell a story as we saw in her great book WarCross earlier this year. The difficulty is she was given such a legend of DC comics with a deep lore and story that this particular book seems out of place in the Batman/Bruce Wayne universe. If the TV show Gotham did not exist, this might be an exciting entry to have a young Bruce Wayne, but in the Gotham series, the Joker and Penguin are already running around, so a girl in a cell is a pretty tough sell.

It isn’t a bad book though and if the rumors are true, I think I would have liked that book more. The rumor was Lu didn’t want to write a Batman book, but rather a Nightwing/Robin book, which would put this book into a better place. Robin doesn’t have as much of a lore as Wayne does and he is a bit more impulsive, so the book would have fit his character. It just didn’t work for Batman.

I gave this one 3 stars, but not for the writing. It was for the subject.

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