21 June 2017

Faster than a DC Bullet: Prose Fiction #13: Spider-Man: The Lizard Sanction

Hardcover, 333 pages
Published 1995

Borrowed from the library
Read April 2017
Spider-Man: The Lizard Sanction
by Diane Duane
illustrations by Darick Robertson & Scott Koblish

If you'd asked me to guess which Marvel superhero Diane Duane would be asked to write for, I'd've guessed the Fantastic Four, whose fantastic cosmic adventures seem like a good fit for the style of writing Duane demonstrated in Star Trek novels like The Wounded Sky, or in some of the more cosmic Young Wizards books. But when reading The Lizard Sanction I grokked why Duane is a good fit for Spider-Man (other than her love for New York City, where this book doesn't take place): it's because she believes in niceness so damn much. Like, in one of her Star Trek novels (Dark Mirror) she even posits that morality levels are fundamental factors of different universes! So of course she's a good fit for Spider-Man, because not only is Peter Parker nice (the best parts of this book are probably when he goes to visit the family of the Lizard in both his identities, I mean how often do people think of the family members of supervillains unless one of them is about to descend into supervillainy themselves?), but everyone is nice. He bumps into cops and investigators, and they're all, "how can we help?" This wasn't a gripping novel (I had a hard time investing in the plot), but it was a diverting one, and its sort of casually optimistic tone was its best part.

Next Week: Back to DC's never-ending stream of crises, beginning with The Multiversity!

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