The book was funny as heck. There's no sex and no major resolution to the romance – this is a book about a first date, not a full-scale romance. But it does its job of telling a first date superhero story superbly and is fun and interesting and left me wanting to read about the further adventures of Burke and Gina.
Gina is a bored receptionist for EnClo Corporation. She keeps a toy Alien Queen in her inbox and plays scrabble at work all day (“The little plastic Alien Queen seemed to give her a reproachful look for her laziness. Apparently gestating hundreds of acidic babies makes alien queens judgmental”). All that changes when Burke (GET IT? BURKE? HEE HEE) shows up with his mysterious boss, Mr. Sparks. Is Mr. Sparks more than he seems? Will we ever learn the secret behind EnClo? Will Gina ever, ever get a raise? All these questions and more are answered in the course of Gina and Burke's first mayhem filled date.
This book explores some of the same themes as the movie Megamind and the darker novel Soon I Will Be Invincible, but by focusing on the role of the henchman, the story stays fresh. Things stay light and funny throughout even as the questions they raise are intelligent and interesting. If you ever wanted to know why someone would want to be a henchman, or how to apply for the job, this is your chance to find out.
If I must quibble, I'd say first of all that the story ends quickly and is more like the pilot to an awesome TV show than a full romance novel. I don't want the actual novella to be longer. It's just right. What I need is another installment. In fact, I need it to be a TV show, especially since I've watched all the episodes of The Tick on DVD and there is a void in my life that even Community cannot fill. Really, this is a sitcom that must happen. Don't make me beg.
Secondly, even though the henchman thing was original the story itself was very predictable.
Final quibble: at times Gina was way too stupid to live, but once she adjusted to her new circumstances she became quite the badass, which gives me another reason to want to read the next installment.
In short, you can read this book in roughly the same amount of time it takes to drink a frappachino and both experiences are similarly enjoyable. I'll always be grateful for certain lines of dialogue:
“Listen to reason? By definition, Static is unreasonable. He's an evil supervillain”, Gina said flatly. “He stole all the quarters in three states to protest, and I quote, 'the dictatorship of parking meters.'”
Burke shrugged. “Static used to smoke a lot of pot…”
Thanks Mari Fee, now get going on the series. How about a web series? Pleeeeease? See, now I'm begging.