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Enemies & Allies by Kevin J. Anderson
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Enemies & Allies (edition 2010)

by Kevin J. Anderson

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1913787,999 (3.52)2
Member:MKwitch
Title:Enemies & Allies
Authors:Kevin J. Anderson
Info:Harper (2010), Edition: Reprint, Mass Market Paperback, 320 pages
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Enemies & Allies by Kevin J. Anderson

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This was an interesting take on two familiar superheroes but felt a bit hollow. Anderson did a good job of hitting all of the expected points in a Superman/Batman story but that is exactly what it felt like, like he was running down a checklist of typical situations and making sure to include them all. ( )
  bensdad00 | Jan 10, 2017 |
Enemies and Allies by Kevin J. Anderson is an interesting alternate history look, not only for Batman and Superman’s first meeting but also a new look at the USA of the 1950s, complete with the Cold War and banging shoes at the UN by a certain Russian (nope, not Khrushchev!).

Anderson wrote Last Days of Krypton and then wrote E&A right afterwards, but E&A cannot really be considered a sequel. It stands on its own.

I was impressed how he portrayed Batman as a brooding man who is prepared for anything and makes no assumptions. The “Dark Knight” aspect of Batman was not introduced until the 1980s or so, so to see this in the 1950s was surprising. (Comics history note: the 1950s Batman was fighting alien invaders and wearing rainbow colors with his sidekick Robin. No Robin in this alternate!).

Superman has a few run-ins with Lois Lane as he tries to figure out the lovelorn column for the Daily Planet. Even with all his powers (he thinks), he cannot solve these troubling relationship problems. This part of the story is trying to humanize Clark Kent but it comes off as a page filler. Not a lot of character development here. Not even when we meet Ma Kent and Superman tells his mom his troubles – could have left this on the editing floor, Kevin!

The crux of the story centers around Lex Luthor, a corporate magnate who has Wayne Enterprises’ directors in his pocket and collects all sorts of stolen data for his defense contracts.

A kryptonite meteor is being mined by the Russians. It is interesting that this story shows Superman as new to Kryptonite and he weakens at the close proximity to the stuff. Will Batman use it as well?

Neither Batman nor Superman trust each other but they help each other anyway with a common enemy afoot. Tossing nuclear missiles is the least of Superman’s worries!

Bottom Line:

Unfair criticism of Anderson by some reviews as far as character development is concerned but heck, it reads as a comic book and isn’t that the point?

Mixing real corporate espionage with two iconic characters and then creating an alternate history with Luthor’s megalomania and secret Russian spies makes for some fun reading. It’s fast and fun, but probably only good enough to read once.
( )
  James_Mourgos | Dec 22, 2016 |
Very much enjoyed this one. I thought the way the characters were "inserted" into the 1950's was interesting and well done; the plot was very realistic for the setting and the character's involvement in the events made plenty of sense to me. Overall, a fun read! ( )
  cybercarotte | Nov 23, 2016 |
Great fun. Perfect genre fiction. Light and entertaining reading. Superman is okay. (But batman is awesome!) ( )
  ndpmcIntosh | Mar 21, 2016 |
I listened to this book on audiobook in the car. I started on my way home from vacation and finished it up while stuck in traffic going to work. I ripped the cds to my ipod and just as an fyi the cd tracks are not labled in any useful kind of way so make sure you label them before you actually let it rip so you don't have to do it twice like I did because I couldn't figure out which tracks were from which disc.

As far as the story goes, both Batman and Superman were basically their golden age characters. I know some people have stated that they don't really get Superman's motivation but honestly I firmly believe that the author tried to keep all of these characters as close to their original counterparts as possible. I also can understand Superman's feelings. The world can be a difficult place to live in. There is famine, war, murder and a whole host of other problems. I understand the feelings that you have to help people. It kind of relieves some of the sadness that I feel by helping others. (Of course I don't do it in a big blue suit with a cape.)

Lois Lane's golden age persona was never my favorite. She starts out so strong and then always devolves into a damsel in distress and frequently shows little common sense when making decisions to chase a story. I'm all for a girl being a go-getter but she relies on Superman so heavily that a lot of her strenght gets lost in the crossfire.

The golden age characters work very well with the Cold War storyline, and Lex Luthor is a truly evil/crazy villian. This is definitely one of those books where the good guys are very good and the villians are like something out of your worst nightmare, everything was very black and white just like early comic books were.

It was a light listen, with an adventurous story that had lots of great cliff hangers (of course that might have more to do with exactly when I was arriving home or at work). I really liked the narrator, although as it must be with most narrators for some characters his voice was spot on and for others it was just wrong. But I think more often then not the voices were spot on. While normally I don't always enjoy books that are very techy I want to give the author credit for not going so far into the technology that I was completely turned off. I felt like the descriptions of new weapons and technology were just enough. I also appreciated the occaisonal refernces to people who were alive and very prominent people during the early Cold War.

( )
  Rosa.Mill | Nov 21, 2015 |
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Dedication
To Mary Thomson and Cherie Buchheim

Longtime friends, fans, research experts, geeks, and genuine enthusiasts.
First words
Above the cloud-misted seas and majestic continents of Earth orbited a small metal sphere that was not much larger than a basketball.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Book description
It was a time of international tensions, a time of hope and fear—when Elvis, Howdy Doody, UFOs, and the Communist menace preoccupied America.

It was the first time in history when human beings had the power to destroy their world.

A time when heroes were needed more than ever.

Evil is loose in the world. As the United States and the Soviet Union race to build their nuclear stockpiles, two extraordinary

men are called upon to form an uneasy alliance. Studies in opposites—shadow and light—a Dark Knight and a Man of Steel must overcome their mutual distrust to battle a darkness that threatens humankind. And when the paths of these titans cross, a bold and exciting new chapter of history will be written . . . and nothing will ever be the same.
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In a time of fear and mistrust, as America and the USSR race to build bigger nuclear missiles aimed at each other's greatest cities, two extraordinary heroes-- polar opposites in their attitude and actions-- will come together to stop the bad guys and save the world--Publisher description.… (more)

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