Story Time for Grownups: Superheroes Abound

Not all superheroes have capes. From the teachers who inspired us as students to the girl who stood up to the Taliban who went on to win a Nobel Peace Prize, we aspire to reach the heights of those that we look up to. But many also look to the stars and the skies for caped crusaders, who, at the end of their day, save planets and universes and don’t break a sweat. The library is home to many of these superheroes. All you have to do is reach for your library card.


Aaron, Jason. “The mighty Thor. 1, thunder in her veins”.

“When Dr. Jane Foster lifts the mystic hammer Mjolnir, she is transformed into the Goddess of Thunder, the Mighty Thor! Her enemies are many, as Asgard descends further into chaos and unrest threatens to spread throughout the Ten Realms. Yet her greatest battle is against a far more personal foe: the cancer that is killing her mortal form. When Loki steps back into Thor ‘s life, will it ease her troubles or only add to her pain? It’s time to find out whether the next chapter in the twisting tale of the Trickster will be one of good or evil! There’s no such question about Malekith, though, as he and his Dark Council continue to fan the flames of a looming War of Realms! Jason Aaron continues his startling saga of the mighty Thor!”–Amazon.


Bendis, Brian Michael. “Guardians of the Galaxy. Vol. 1, Emperor Quill”.

Peter Quill has abandoned the Guardians and his role as Star-Lord to be emperor of the Spartax! Now, Rocket has grabbed the reins as team leader – backed up by Drax, Venom, Groot, Kitty Pryde and brand-new Guardian Ben Grimm, the ever-lovin’ blue eyed Thing! But what could put the team into the crosshairs of Emperor Quill and his Imperial Guard?” © Bowker


Forbeck, Matt, Matthew K. Manning & Dan Wallace. “The Avengers encyclopedia”.

The most comprehensive single volume ever published on Marvel’s premier Super Hero team, Marvel’s The Avengers Encyclopedia is an expansive encyclopedia detailing the genesis of the team and its individual heroes and foes. Explore the origins and powers of more than 250 characters and 40 teams and lineups including fan-favorites such as Captain America and Black Widow. Discover twenty of the most significant storylines in The Avengers’ history and see prominent characters, such as Iron Man and Thor, explored in impressive detail, with special features including a lineup of Iron Man’s many suits and all the characters who have wielded Thor’s hammer. Structured in a fun and accessible way and packed with fantastic comic book art, Marvel’s The Avengers Encyclopedia is a must-have guide to Earth’s Mightiest Heroes.” © Marvel


Fox, Gardner F. “The justice League of America, the silver age. Issue 20-30.” [eBook]

As individuals, their names are legend. Together, they are even greater than the sum of their parts. They are the Justice League of America, and they stand for truth, justice and the American way! Since they were first commissioned by renowned DC Comics editor Julius Schwartz in 1960, the Justice League has thrilled audiences across the globe in tales that span time and space. Now, for the first time, all of their original Silver Age adventures are available in an all-new series of trade paperback editions!” © Bowker


Golden, Christie. “Valerian and the city of a thousand planets : the official movie novelization media tie in”. [On order]

In the 28th century, Valerian and Laureline are a team of special operatives charged with maintaining order throughout the human territories. Under assignment from the Minister of Defense, the two embark on a mission to the astonishing city of Alpha–an ever-expanding metropolis where species from all over the universe have converged over centuries to share knowledge, intelligence and cultures with each other. There is a mystery at the center of Alpha, a dark force which threatens the peaceful existence of the City of a Thousand Planets, and Valerian and Laureline must race to identify the marauding menace and safeguard not just Alpha, but the future of the universe.” © Bowker


Irvine, Alex. “Marvel superheroes secret wars : a novel of the Marvel universe”.

The fate of the entire Marvel Universe hangs in the balance as Earth’s mightiest heroes face their greatest challenge! Summoned across the stars by the mysterious and unbelievably powerful Beyonder, the Avengers, Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four and the X-Men are set against their deadliest foes on the mysterious planet known as Battleworld – with the winner promised the ultimate prize. Can even the heroes’ combined might prevent Dr. Doom from becoming the most powerful being in the universe?” © Bowker


Lepore, Jill. “The secret history of Wonder Woman”.

In her latest compelling book of historical sleuthing and resurrection, Lepore (Book of Ages, 2013) chronicles the creation and assesses the impact of Wonder Woman, the most popular female comic-book superhero of all time. The tiara-wearing amazon burst forth in 1941, the brainchild of Charles Moulton (pen name of William Moulton Marston), a controversial, Harvard-educated polymath and huckster who invented the lie-detector test and lived a life of deception. The first historian granted access to Marston’s private papers, Lepore tells a true tale nearly as outlandish as the plots Marston concocted for Wonder Woman…” –Seaman, Donna © 2014 Booklist


Maslon, Laurence. “Superheroes! : capes, cowls, and the creation of comic book culture”.

In this companion to the documentary Superheroes: A Never-Ending Battle, Maslon and Kantor (Make ‘Em Laugh, 2008) track the history of superhero comic books, beginning with the humble birth of Superman in 1938, through the momentum-crushing Comics Code Authority, and to the superheroes’ defiant comeback, leading to the multibillion-dollar industry of today. Along the way, the authors note comics’ deep connection to American history, from Captain America punching Hitler on the cover of his debut issue to the benchmark Spider-Man story depicting the aftermath of 9/11…” –Hunter, Sarah © 2010 Booklist


Mignogna, Liesa (ed.). “Last night a superhero saved my life : Neil Gaiman, Jodi Picoult, Brad Meltzer, and an all-star roster on the cape crusaders that changed their lives”.

“…There are deliberations on how we can see love, childhood, gender, and writing through the lens of superheroes, from the popular to the obscure. But at the heart of the collection are contributions that plunge deeply into dark recollections of personal trauma, most effectively editor Mignogna’s wrenching The Hero I Needed. These essays bear out how superheroes (mostly Batman) are powerful psychological receptacles, helping us define the crucial strength we need to survive a sentiment which will be of great value to many soul-searchers…” –Karp, Jesse © 2016 Booklist


Slott, Dan, et al. “The amazing Spider-Man : renew your vows”.

“Peter Parker, his wife Mary Jane, and their daughter must scrape by to make ends meet — but at least they have each other! And Peter will protect his family at all costs — even if it means suiting up once again and taking on the godlike Regent. But Peter isn’t the only one willing to risk all for the family — and his daughter isn’t about to sit back and let her dad have all the fun, either!”–Page 4 of cover.


Tye, Larry. “Superman : the high-flying history of America’s most enduring superhero”.

Tye offers this super-powered, well researched look into every aspect of the character in comics, radio, TV, films, and theater, muscling into such areas as insider editorial decisions, licensing, litigations, and mass comic book burnings… Tracing the Man of Steel through eight decades, he begins in Cleveland, where teenager Jerry Siegel created ‘The Super-Man’ in 1932 and then teamed with artist Joe Shuster: ‘They agreed that Superman had to be everything they were not: strapping and dashing, fearless yet composed.’ After six years of rejections, their character soared in 1938 to ‘quickly become the big brother every kid needed.’” © PWxyz, LLC.



If you’re a big comic books fan, you might want to check out the WPB Comic Crawl, taking place on Sunday, July 16 along Clematis Street in downtown West Palm Beach. At the end of the month, fans of all things comics, sci-fi, and more will gather in Fort Lauderdale for Supercon. Palm Beach Happening will be at both of these events; will you?


The Palm Beach County Library System has dozens of electronic books, printed books both novels & non-fiction, audiobooks, and DVDs or Blu-ray discs to help you understand how much we really need superheroes in our daily lives! Travel to your closest branch or find them on the web! As always, we’d like to thank Adam Davis, director of system services for the Palm Beach County Library System, for all his help in putting together this list.