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on 22 November 2012
This is the first superhero story I have read in the novel form (although I am currently listening to the audio book of Ex-Heroes: 1) and I absolutely loved it. I am a big fan of superheroes in any medium, and it was refreshing seeing it done like this.

I think I should mention that there isn't a lot of originality in some of the bigger stories, e.g. the origins of superheroes, and the whole people don't like superheroes so they have to become registered etc. HOWEVER, the story revels in the fact that these stories have been done before. The writing throughout is fantastic, and it really is fun to read. The powers vary greatly, many of them have been done a million times already, however I did like the two main characters superpowers. I would say that while both are takes on other powers that have been done before, they still stood out as being fairly unique.

I never felt that this story took itself too seriously, to read it your sense of realism had to be stretched. But that's what superhero stories are all about. I was hooked throughout reading it. Despite the cliched story lines there were plenty of surprises, and I never found myself bored as I read it.

At the start of each chapter was a small paragraph, detailing superheroes, their powers, and their current whereabouts (many of whom are now dead, mostly of cancer). I can almost picture the author, Chris Strange, sitting down and coming up with hundreds of hero's and villains and their powers. And having great fun as he did so.

I loved this story, and will be looking out for more from Chris Strange. Highly recommended to comic book fans, or superhero movie fans.
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on 9 November 2013
This book took me by surprise. Firstly because I can't remember actually buying it and secondly because it played on my expectations and blindsided me. It is set in a world where meta humans exist, their abilities sparked by the fall out of atomic bombs, and although they have power they are also prone to cancer and early deaths. This is a world that used to love super heroes but now sees them as a threat. Society has grown to mistrust the Metas and they live in ghettos or the fringes of society. Some of them have kill switches implanted in their heads so the authorities can just wipe them out if they don't tow the line. Their children are taken from them. They are subjugated. But despite this some still try to be heroes and this is the crux of the story.

The first chapter introduces us to Quanta who is a supervillain intent on fulfilling his last real master plan to change the world. He is a strange one because at times he is actually quite sympathetic and I found myself wanting to root for him on several occasions (although at times he is utterly monstrous too). It was good to see such an interesting and rounded villain and to be honest he would've overshadowed the protagonists had they not also been so original and well created. The Carpenter is wonderful (who'd have thought that the telekinetic control of wood could be so cool) but it is Spook who quite rightly steals the show. With her antagonistic attitude, shadow powers and cool gadgets this is a character I'd love to see again. Infact the whole book is packed with original characters I'd love to know more about.

Chris Strange really knows how to pull you into a story and put you on that emotional rollercoaster ride. I had great difficulty putting the book down.

[...]
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on 18 May 2014
Chris Strange's "Don't Be a Hero" was an impulse buy for me. I was not expecting it to be the best superhero novel I have read, but that is what is (and I have read very, very many superhero novels!).
If you enjoy books that are fast paced without being rushed, carefully plotted (without plot holes... such a nice change) and with characters of depth, subtlety and cool powers (that's why I read it in the first place) then please, give "Don't Be a Hero" a go.

And to Mr. Strange...... Happy Thank You More Please
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on 1 July 2013
I grew up with superhero comics and I chose this book because of the title and sub-title.
I was gripped by the story and the characters. I could not put it down.
Some of the action was a little difficult to read for someone of my sensitive disposition because it is so well written and because I became involved with the characters, but I really enjoyed the story.
I even prefer this novel to the graphic novel "The Watchmen".
I highly recommend this novel.
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on 8 July 2013
Have enjoyed superhero related story stuff for years now, be it on screen or written. This story is well written and leaves you wanting to know more about the world it's set in and all the many possible characters. Had never found anything done by Chris Strange before but will be keeping a close eye out for any more of this style. Keep it up Chris.
A recommend for anyone with a like of superheroes.
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on 24 July 2013
This is without doubt one of the best novels of this genre that I have ever read.
The powers that the protagonists possess are never allowed to take over the story.
All the characters (even the villain) are believable and the story had me hooked from the start.
It's also good to read a story that doesn't take place in America.
Looking forward to reading more from Chris Strange.
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on 6 May 2015
My first book from Chris Strange and one that made me buy more. Was a bit hard to get into the world initially due to the time period and the setting, but overall a top quality book which had me hooked.
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on 6 January 2014
Loved this book, well created characters and environment. Gripping story too. Good to see a female lead. Recommend this to everyone.
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on 23 November 2013
I have to be honest im big on art work, I was browsing the Kindle site for a superhero book and I came across this, I have to admit I did not like the jacket at all... but it did its job and enticed me in to look closer.
I have to say that the jacket cover does not do the story any justice ( sorry no offense to the artist ) the story is crammed full of heros and villians , Doll Face would give Joker a run for his money... I loved it and although some times a little heavy on the amount of characters in it I could not stop turning the page, this was a really good idea well executed.
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