My rating: 2 of 5 stars
The short version: I like what Tom De Haven did; I just don’t like the way he did it.
The not-so-short version: It’s Superman! is a retelling of the Superman myth setting it in the 1930s-1950s. There is some true cleverness in this alternate version including:
– The mortality of Superman’s adopted parents
– The origin of the costume and the creation of the final costume
– The handling of actual historical issues of the time (racism, etc.)
The most interesting element is Clark coming to grips with becoming Superman through the motivation of a self serving friend. There are moments when you outright feel sorry for the boy and it gives the Kryptonian a very human element to his personality.
BUT… Mr. De Haven’s writing style drags. He has obviously worked hard to include the vernacular of the time which is commendable, but his core storytelling style takes too much time. I was left with the feeling of seeing a good movie that would have been great had the correct director been given the reigns.
This book is worth the read ONLY if you’re a die-hard Superman fan. If you’re only a casual one, though, trudging through the author’s style isn’t worth it.