Book Review: Batman The Dark Knight Returns – Frank Miller

Book Review: Batman The Dark Knight Returns – Frank Miller

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Release Date:
May 28th 1997
Publisher: DC Comics
Pages: 224
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: I bought a copy of this for a University class
Rating: 3.5/5 stars

Synopsis

This masterpiece of modern comics storytelling brings to vivid life a dark world and an even darker man. Together with inker Klaus Janson and colorist Lynn Varley, writer/artist Frank Miller completely reinvents the legend of Batman in his saga of a near-future Gotham City gone to rot, ten years after the Dark Knight’s retirement.

Crime runs rampant in the streets, and the man who was Batman is still tortured by the memories of his parents’ murders. As civil society crumbles around him, Bruce Wayne’s long-suppressed vigilante side finally breaks free of its self-imposed shackles.

The Dark Knight returns in a blaze of fury, taking on a whole new generation of criminals and matching their level of violence. He is soon joined by this generation’s Robin—a girl named Carrie Kelley, who proves to be just as invaluable as her predecessors.

But can Batman and Robin deal with the threat posed by their deadliest enemies, after years of incarceration have made them into perfect psychopaths? And more important, can anyone survive the coming fallout of an undeclared war between the superpowers—or a clash of what were once the world’s greatest superheroes?

Over fifteen years after its debut, Batman: The Dark Knight Returns remains an undisputed classic and one of the most influential stories ever told in the comics medium.

Review

Copy of book coverWhen I was at University I took a literature class on popular culture and this was one of the required texts. I really enjoyed reading it at the time but haven’t picked it up for a number of years. I thought it would be a fun reread and I’m so glad I decided to give it another read, this classic Batman tale is dark and gritty and a must read for superhero fans.

This story is quite a slow burn, following Bruce Wayne as he returns to his life as Batman many years later. Gotham City has become plagued with crime and the criminal underworld is bigger than ever. Donning his Batman costume one more, Batman returns to Gotham. But Bruce Wayne is older, he’s not able to move as fast things aren’t as they were ten years ago. When Superman tries to put a stop to Batman’s vigilante behaviour, their frosty relationship gets a whole lot worse.

I really liked the art style in this. It was pretty different to the other Batman graphic novels I’ve read before and it was enjoyable to read this classic of the Batman universe. Having read it before I was surprised by how little I remembered of the story, but it was dark and intrigued and easily kept me engrossed in the story.

This was a fun and quick read, and if you’re looking to read more Batman graphic novels I’d recommend giving this one a go. It’s definitely made me want to pick up a few more Batman graphic novels over the next few months!
4 Stars

Book Review: Batman Nightwalker – Marie Lu

Book Review: Batman Nightwalker – Marie Lu

BOOK REVIEW - 2019-03-02T093208.118.png
Series:
DC Icons #2
Release Date: January 2nd 2018
Publisher: Penguin Random House
Pages: 272
Find it on: Goodreads. BookDepository. Waterstones.
Source: The publisher kindly sent me a copy of this book to review
Rating: 3.5/5

Synopsis

Before he was Batman, he was Bruce Wayne. A reckless boy willing to break the rules for a girl who may be his worst enemy.

The Nightwalkers are terrorizing Gotham City, and Bruce Wayne is next on their list.

One by one, the city’s elites are being executed as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is turning eighteen and about to inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Enterprises and all the tech gadgetry his heart could ever desire. But after a run-in with the police, he’s forced to do community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most brutal criminals.

Madeleine Wallace is a brilliant killer . . . and Bruce’s only hope.

In Arkham, Bruce meets Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. What is she hiding? And why will she speak only to Bruce? Madeleine is the mystery Bruce must unravel. But is he getting her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees? Bruce will walk the dark line between trust and betrayal as the Nightwalkers circle closer.

Review

book cover - 2019-03-02T092835.207This is the second book in the DC Icons series. Anyone who has seen my review of Wonder Woman Warbringer or my favourite reads of 2017 will know that I absolutely adored it and couldn’t wait to get my hands on book two. Growing up I absolutely adored Batman, and I was so excited to see what Marie Lu would do with the story – she definitely didn’t disappoint.

The story is full of Gotham’s trademark darkness and corruption, but Bruce Wayne is just a young boy who lost his parents during a mugging gone wrong. One rash decision leads Bruce to community service and everything begins to hype up from there.

I really enjoyed this book. It’s completely different to Wonder Woman, which was quite funny and full of adventure. Nightwalker on the other hand is darker and more tense, and I was definitely hooked in from the start. The characters that Marie Lu has created are fantastic – I loved Madeline the Nightwalker that Bruce befriend. I also loved seeing Bruce’s relationships develop with characters we are already familiar with like Alfred and Harvey Dent.

The book is well paced and there’s plenty of action and mystery to keep you wanting more. The book isn’t a terribly long one, and I ended up reading it in a few sittings. I did prefer the previous book Wonder Woman as I felt this lacked the surprise twists and turns of Warbringer. That being said the book is still a terrific read and if you’re a fan of Batman or superhero fiction, it’s definitely one to pick up.
4 stars