Masked, a collection of straight-up superhero stories was the best book of 2010. So sayeth SuperheroNovels.com. Each of the contributing authors fearlessly embraced the tropes of superhero fiction and successfully expanded the genre’s horizons. Hats off to the project’s editor and everyone involved. Hopefully we’ll see a second volume soon.
But Masked wasn’t the only notable book this year. Don’t forget about Ex-Heroes by Peter Clines, and Bitter Seeds by Ian Tregillis. They were both strong efforts too. And if you’re generous (which we are), you have to give some love to The Rise of Renegade X by Chelsea Campbell, The Green Lama: Unbound by Adam Garcia, and Ghosts of Manhattan by George Mann. Heck, we even liked Shades of Gray by the dynamic duo of Jackie Kessler and Caitlin Kittredge. Verily, 2010 gave us a super batch of supernovels.
But what’s on the horizon for 2011? Next year promises to be a big year for superheroes at the multiplex. Expect to see supplemental movie novelizations for Green Lantern, Thor, Captain America, and X-Men. There may even be spin-off novels based on The Cape, No Ordinary Family, and Alphas, three television shows with a superhero bent. You never know. And, of course, we’ll definitely see the first of three books based on the Walking Dead comic book. Tie-in writers will be busy in 2011.
Beyond all the licensed material, there will be a bevy of original superhero novels published next year. Below is a quick list of titles that have already popped up on our radar. If you’re an author or publisher who has something in the pipeline (and it’s not on our list), please notify us by e-mail. We’ll update this post right away. And, of course, we’ll add it to our reading list.
After the Golden Age by Carrie Vaughn. The Ascension: A Super Human Clash by Michael Carroll. Best of A Thousand Faces 2011 edited by Frank Byrns. Beta City edited by Michael Lea. Blaze of Glory by Sheryl Nantus. Broken by Susan Jane Bigelow. Chicks in Capes edited by Lori Gentile and Karen O’Brien. The Damned Busters by Matthew Hughes. The Death-Ray (reissue) by Daniel Clowes. Ex-Patriots by Peter Clines. The Falling Machine by Andrew Mayer. Fort Freak by George R.R. Martin and crew. Ghosts of War by George Mann. Gods of Justice edited by Kevin Hosey. Invasion: Book One of the Secret World Chronicle by Mercedes Lackey, Steve Libbey, Cody Martin, and Dennis Lee. Mystery Men (& Women), Vol. 2 edited by Ron Fortier. The Samantha Granger Experiment: Fearless by Kari Townsend. Sentinels: Stellarax by Van Allen Plexico. Sorceress, Interrupted by A.J. Menden. The Supernots by Leon Ardkin. Trance by Kelly Meding. Unseen World (reissue) by Sean Cummings.
And one final item: Tor and DC Entertainment are working together on a new novel program. Both companies have been hush-hush about the whole thing. But a couple of books from this partnership might hit stores sometime in 2011. Fingers crossed.