The Imaginary Realms of
Gilbert M. Stack



Spiderman: The Darkest Hours by Jim Butcher

Posted by Gilbert Stack on January 13, 2022 at 9:00 PM

Spiderman: The Darkest Hours by Jim Butcher

I love Spiderman. I’ve read his comics off and on since the summer between third and fourth grade. I watched the original cartoon series and many that have come after. I’ve seen most of the movies and read at least two dozen novels (probably many more) focused on the character. So it’s with some authority that I say Jim Butcher’s The Darkest Hours is one of the best Spiderman books out there.


First off, Butcher gets the key Spiderman elements right—action, banter, and sense of responsibility. His Spiderman feels like Spiderman from moment one. He’s selfless, he’s heroic, and he’s smart.


Second, Butcher utilizes Peter Parker very well by giving him a problem that Spiderman can’t solve for him. Then he gives Mary Jane a similar problem—something Peter wants to assist with, but can’t solve by spinning webs or climbing walls. These problems distract Spiderman at critical times to the good of the story.


Butcher also does more with the Rhino than any author I’ve yet encountered. I’ve always like the villain, but Butcher made me like the man behind the villain even more. Add to that, he doesn’t ignore the fact that NYC is full of superheroes who might be expected to help Spiderman with his problems.


Finally, and I think most importantly in a superhero novel, Butcher presents a trio of supervillains who are truly fearsome—an excellent threat for Spiderman from start to finish.


Categories: Reviews