Heroes Fall

Serenity City Book 1

Heroes Unleashed Book 1

Rated 5.00 out of 5 based on 2 customer ratings
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Heroes Fall
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Victoria doesn’t need a cape and a name to be a hero.

Living and working in the slums of Serenity City, she has become its faceless and nameless defender. She turned her back on the glittering world of professional superheroes years ago. If she has her way, she’ll never go back.

But the young and forgotten teens she helps are disappearing from the street, and nobody seems to care. As Victoria unravels this mystery, she is lead back to her old life in the star-studded glamourous superhero circles. No matter how much she hates it, she can’t abandon the helpless when they need her the most.

All clues point back to The Rampage, the terrible day when their mightiest champion Achilles fell to darkness. Will Victoria uncover the truth of what actually happened twenty years ago in time to help her lost boys and girls?

And what will happen when the fallen hero Achilles escapes, and Victoria is the only one who can stop him?

Morgon Newquist blazes on to the Superhero scene with the first Serenity City book, bringing nuance, emotion, and superpowered fights in spades. A solid, engaging launch to the brand new shared Heroes Unleashed universe, Heroes Fall will hook readers right in and leave them wanting more.

Can Victoria solve the twenty year mystery of Achilles’ fall from grace in time to save Serenity City? Or is there another, more sinister player who will destroy the very idea of superheroes?

Unravel the mystery and fight the villains with Victoria. Buy Heroes Fall today!

Weight 1 lbs
Edition

EBook, Paperback, Hardcover

Book Author

Morgon Newquist, Thomas Plutarch

Book Series

,

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  1. Benjamin I. Espen (verified owner)

    I received a free copy of this book via Booksprout. Thanks to the author, Morgon Newquist, for reaching out on Twitter. I’m always happy to review new stuff.

    As soon as I finished the first chapter, I was hooked. If this chapter didn’t start life as a short story, I think it could easily have stood alone, and been a damn fine piece of work. Each character comes to life in a few short pages, and the stage is set for everything that follows from the unexplained tragedy of the Rampage. I wept a little bit when I read it the first time, and then I wept again when I read it again at the end, now knowing why.

    The question this book asks is: what is the greatest weakness of a superhero?

    One might guess from the eponymous Achilles, the disgraced hero who nearly destroyed the city he was supposed to protect, that each and every superhero has their characteristic weakness, a secret that can be used to defeat them. While this is true, it isn’t as interesting as the realization that heroes [and villains] share our fallen human nature, no matter their powers, and are just as prone to vanity, foolishness, and moral turpitude.

    A man who cannot control his passions is forever weak, no matter how much he can lift.

    This sets the stage for Newquist’s world-building, which is about the kind of society that would emerge when powers can get you fame, influence, or money, but no one has been granted unusual wisdom or exceptionally good judgment beyond human ken.

    In Serenity City, being a superhero is much like being an Instagram personality: a pretty facade hiding a winner-take-all mad dash for endorsements where appearance rules all. Into this cutthroat and remorseless world steps Victoria Westerdale, our young heroine and POV character. She is young, but not young enough not to be disillusioned by the phoniness and media-whoring of the hero business.

    This cover shot of Victoria makes me think there must be a “ Boyfriends of Serenity City ” Instagram account that pokes fun at the guy who took the picture when Victoria posed after beating all those guys up.

    As the story progresses, we learn just how deeply Victoria was wounded by that world, and why she fled from her chance at fame and fortune for a walk up flat in the bad part of town and the night shift at a seedy convenience store. Nearly twenty years after Achilles fought his former friend and colleague Pendragon, devastating the city, Victoria finds herself drawn into all of the unanswered questions that lingered from that terrible day. Her inability to let this mystery go is in part because the answers give her the ability to finally stop running away from her own past.

    Heroes Fall is the first novel in a shared universe, funded by a Kickstarter campaign. The other four authors are J.D. Cowan, Kai Wai Cheah, Jon Mollison, and Richard Watts. I’ve previously reviewed a short story by Kai Wai Cheah, so I’m likely to give at least the initial five novels a read. Given how much I enjoyed Heroes Fall, I am looking forward to Newquist’s sequels as well.

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  2. declanfinninc (verified owner)

    People keep trying to give us “realistic superheroes.”

    I think the trend may have started with “Watchmen,” which told me more of what was in the soul of Alan Moore anything about the superhero genre. A better example (I’m told) is Kurt Busiek’s Astro City, which addresses themes such as a man who becomes a superhero to find redemption, or even the legalities of X-Ray vision and super senses.

    Here’s the successor.

    For those of you who long for the days when comic books were actually entertaining, and the most angst you were subjected to was the occasional Spider Man nervous breakdown, welcome to Heroes Fall by Morgon Newquist.

    We open with The Rampage, a mission where Superman, Batman and …. Iron Fist, I guess…. goes horribly, horribly wrong. One is murdered, the other goes mad, and only one is left standing.

    Sounds like fun … except this isn’t a comic book crossover. This is Morgon’s new world of heroes and villains. The heroes are Achilles, Pendragon and Banshee. And an epic battle of massive destruction throughout the city

    So, yeah, this one was fun. It starts strong, introducing plenty of side characters (even throwaway characters) effortlessly. It was a Hell of a way to open.

    Despite the amount of time the blurb spent on the setup, 90% of the story focuses on Victory Westerdale. She doesn’t want to be a superhero, just a simple, straightforward hero who saves people and goes back to the daily nine to five. It’s mostly a mystery set in a new and improved Astro City. And I can’t say a whole heck of a lot without spoiling it, so I won’t.

    I like the breakdown of the superhero class structure. No, we’re not going into class warfare here, merely a practical approach to superheroes. DC and Marvel comics are truly unrealistic — that only one superhero (Booster Gold, IIRC) — seems to be offered or has desires for fame and notoriety. In the world of Serenity City, everyone wants to climb the hero totem pole. It’s a competitive culture for the next brand endorsement, coming with a good paycheck. And there are some of those heroes who are Iron Man narcissistic and some who are simply saving people and heroing, and taking cash because they’ll take all the help they can get. Of course, this environment means that no one really teams up, but considering how many times the JSA and the JLA and the Avengers have broken up, is anyone surprised when heroes can’t get along?

    The villain of the piece … there are two. They’re both fairly well developed, though one has barely any screen time. If you’re wondering how that happens, it’s largely because of the quality of the “evil plan.” One is a narrative underdog, and the other is a cunning master manipulator. One comes off as David Tennant’s Kilgrave, and the other is trying to do “good” for noble reasons, but has all the skills and talents of Richard III, or the MCU’s Civil War villain. Think of John le Carre’s Carla, who has no screen time, but almost everything is about him.

    The end? It’s a bit of a train wreck, with a moral quandary that had only one solution.

    At the end of the day, fans of the superhero genre should recognize the occasional tip of the hat to everything from The Dark Knight to Astro City to Green Hornet. That would be a spoiler if you could get the permutations right. We have Alfred with superpowers. A character named Ash who I suspect could be played by Bruce Campbell. A healer hero named Panacea (yes, really). A hero lawyer with the ability to cloud men’s minds. And oh dear me, we’re going to have a realistic portrayal of what it would be like as a superhero, only none of this grim and gritty Alan Moore BS? Be still my heart.

    Also acknowledging that Batman basically has a superpower. Long story. But the description of the bat cave here will have you playing Danny Elfman’s Batman score.

    Of course, Morgon gets her martial arts right. If she didn’t, we’d worry. And she does a good job of playing superhero chess — how does Y superhero use X powers against Z and Z’s powers. Even the execution of powers are well thought out.

    Also, Morgon has a degree in Latin, so expect a ton of quotes and references from … everyone. Peter Pan, The Aenid, The Illiad, The Odyssey, Greek myth, Roman myth, a few other myths. I do so enjoy it when the authors I read actively read other people …. and steal from them. It warms my heart. You get little bits like “He is Lancelot, not Arthur. But even Lancelot is better than Mordred.”

    And the moral of the story, as it usually is in classical mythology — Pride kills.

    Just get Heroes Fall today. If you like superheroes, you’ll enjoy it. If you like “literature,” you’ll enjoy it. Or fight scenes. Or action pieces. Or mysteries. Or Scifi. Or Fantasy.

    Yeah. It’s just plain fun.

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