GRAPHIC NOVELS

Heroes in Crisis

DC. Oct. 2019. 248p. ISBN 9781401291426. $29.99; ebk. ISBN 9781779503725. Rated: Teen+. superheroes
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Sanctuary, the clandestine and supposedly highly secure hospital created to give costumed heroes a place to heal and process trauma in between battles with their sinister foes, becomes a crime scene after a brutal attack. This results in the death of nearly every patient seeking refuge there, and the secrets of all of the heroes who ever visited released to the public. When Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, and others join forces to solve the mystery, they discover the only witnesses are Harley Quinn and Booster Gold, neither of whom possess a reputation for being particularly reliable. To make matters more confusing, both are convinced the other is the culprit.
VERDICT Mann (Gambit: King of Thieves; The Complete Collection) renders dynamic action and somber moments of conversation and reflection equally well, while the narrative by King (Mister Miracle) explores some fascinating corners of many classic characters’ psyches and the toll that war takes on even the mightiest warriors with nuance and sensitivity. Unfortunately, the plot feels increasingly padded as it progresses, and the bafflingly complicated solution to the mystery is far from satisfying. Collects the entire nine-issue limited series.

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