This is a collection of superhero short stories set in a shared universe, with stories by a dozen authors and some artwork by others. It’s really a series of vignettes in the ongoing struggle between the Protectors and the Defilers. Of course, nothing is quite so black and white as they were in Superman’s days, so we have ethically challenged heroes, villains who are motivated by a higher purpose, and plenty of backstabbing team-switching to go around.
As a collection, it was a little hit-or-miss for me, but that’s almost to be expected in a multi-author anthology such as this. A few simply did not work for me, while others really shined. A couple of those standouts were “Pukeman” by “Crippen” and Going Solar by Williams, but my favorite was probably “Interview with a Supervillain”. It was an interesting little tale of what it would be like to actually interview the most notorious and evil villain around. Up close, he’s not quite so reprehensible as you’d expect. Frankly, I’d have like that story to have been longer, just to explore that a little further.
Now, as a disclaimer, I was given this book as an advanced reader copy by a friend, so I didn’t pay for it, but if sexy and morally ambiguous superheroes are your thing, give it a shot.