Blog Tour: Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu




Rating: 4 stars
Release Date: January 2, 2018
Publisher: Random House Books for Young Readers
Genre: young adult fantasy/adventure, superheroes
Format/Source: ARC, Barnes & Noble B-Fest prize
Status: Book 2 of the DC Icons series
Links: Wait For You review (also 4 stars)

Disclaimer: I was given a copy of this book as a prize during Barnes & Noble B-Fest. This does not affect the content of my review.



Summary:
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:
Like Marie Lu, my first introduction to Batman was watching the animated series as a child. My sister and I watched all the animated superhero cartoons, but Bruce's masked adventures in Gotham City are most memorable. I've never been a comic book person, but I've always enjoyed other superhero media. And Bruce Wayne's Batman has enjoyed so many iterations since those animated days, so many reimaginings in just the last 20 years that honestly, I don't blame anyone who is tired of Gotham's caped crusader. I've personally avoided DC's latest cinematic attempts at a new Batman (because Batfleck? REALLY, Dc?!?!?! No thank you!) because animated Batman and Val Kilmer's rubber nippled Batman Forever will always be my favorites (yes, really), BUT. When I heard Marie was the author helming the Batman installment of the DC Icons series, I knew it would be something special. A new take on an old character. A new vision that would slot himself beautifully into a decades-old canon. And I was right.

I feel like sometimes popular properties that are loaned out feel stunted or that the writers are creatively bound. It's the reason some writers and directors leave projects like the Marvel Cinematic Universe or Star Wars. But I didn't feel that at all reading Nightwalker. Marie's Bruce absolutely feels like a teenage version of the character I've known since childhood, but I could feel Marie's style, her touch, her characterization in every word and scene.

I've been a fan of Marie's ever since the days of Legend, and it was amazing to see reflections of her past characters. Day's tremendous physical prowess and the weight of responsibility and tragedy that lay on his shoulders at a young age are traits shared by Bruce. June's privilege and quest first for vengeance and then for justice are also Bruce's. Adelina's darkness is Bruce's and her attitude is definitely Madeleine's, as are Emika's great tech skills. But Bruce isn't just these characters and his familiar tragic backstory. This Batman story shows us a version we've rarely seen. Not the young, grieving childhood Bruce or the charming playboy philanthropist or the jaded, toughened warrior. This is a Bruce on the precarious cliff between childhood and adulthood. A Bruce feeling the weight of his parents' legacy for the first time. A Bruce truly understanding the broken system and his own privilege for the first time.

Please excuse the mixing of DC & Marvel for a moment, but the best-known quote from Spider-Man is "with great power comes great responsibility". Even people who don't know superheroes have heard that one. In Bruce Wayne's case, his privilege is his power. His money. His influence. As our own society currently wrestles with the discussion of privilege and power, I appreciate Marie's exploration of the topic using a beloved character. I think this story will resonate with a lot of readers and hopefully encourage them to examine the privileges they hold. We may not all be billionaires like Bruce. We can't all host grand benefits and galas for charitable endeavors. We certainly can't become tech-ed up vigilantes fighting the system inside and out. I always read the acknowledgments first, and the last paragraph of Marie's is one of the best I've ever read. In it she says, "Super heroes inspire us because they represent the best that humanity can offer. They are our reminders that we, too, can bring about change and do good. You don't need a billion dollars and a Batcave to be like Batman. You just need your brave, badass heart. Keep on fighting."

Batman: Nightwalker is an action-packed adventure (although it does have a bit of a slow start after the intial KAPOW scene. Keep with it!) that also focuses on deep, interesting character development. Because somehow baby Bruce has to grow up, and this book bridges that gap quite well! For longtime Batfans, Nightwalker will be an exciting new look at a favorite hero, and these reader will enjoy seeing some other familiar faces as well (once again, Alfred's wit will steal some scenes!). For anyone who isn't a bat lover or who has been burned by other Batman stories, I still recommend you give this one a try. It's a Marie Lu story, after all, so it's great, but it also breathes new life into a character whose recent appearances in various media has become a bit stale. 

Purchase Links:
   


Tour Schedule:
Week One:
1/4: Mary Had a Little Book Blog

Week Two:

Week Three:
1/18: Icey Books
1/19: Ex Libris

Week Four:

Week Five:

About the Author:
Marie Lu is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Legend trilogy and The Young Elites trilogy. She graduated from the University of Southern California and jumped into the video game industry, working for Disney Interactive Studios as a Flash artist. Now a full-time writer, she spends her spare time reading, drawing, playing Assassin’s Creed, and getting stuck in traffic. She lives in Los Angeles, California (see above: traffic), with one husband, one Chihuahua mix, and two Pembroke Welsh corgis.





Author Links:
    

Giveaway: 
3 winners will receive a finished copy of Batman: Nightwalker. Open to the US only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


5 comments:

  1. I LOVE Marie Lu! And I've also loved the character of Batman so I'm excited to see how she crafts it. :)

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    Replies
    1. Marie is seriously the best, and she did brilliantly creating her own spin of Bruce.

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  2. Thank you so much for the giveaway!

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  3. This book sounds so good. I own Wonder Woman Warbringer, but I still need to read it. I think it would be awesome to own all the DC Icons and read them all at once. Thanks for sharing.

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