Age of Shiva (Pantheon)
by James Lovegrove
Review by Steve Sawicki
Solaris Mass Market Paperback ISBN/ITEM#: 9781781081815
Date: 25 March 2014 List Price $8.99 Amazon US / Amazon UK
Zach Zap, renown comic book artist with a reputation for taking too long to ink his pages due to his desire to make everything perfect gets lifted from a city street by a couple of goons and taken in a secret jet to a far away island to meet with a group of billionaires who want him, and him alone, to design the costumes for the group of super heroes they have created based on Hindu mythology. Zach, while feeling this is a little out of line decides to join them because of the babe who is assigned to work with him. He does ask a few questions along the way but likes the answers he gets. And when he sneaks into their inner sanctum their response is to offer to turn him into one of the superheroes. From there it's all saving the world, bantering, and wondering how to get the girl.
If you thought I was being a bit tongue in cheek in the above description, guess again. The basic problem with this book is that it seems to be the wet dream of a 14 year old boy. The characters are fairly cardboard and the protagonist acts like a 14 year old, quickly justifying everything that is happening to him in ways that keep him performing along the plot lines. And the girl the protagonist is paired with is just there for his lusting and little else. The basic plot is thin and pretty full of holes and ultimately pretty unbelievable. And yet here we are with this in a book.
I suppose if you can accept that if billionaires could create super heroes they would decide to pick Hindu ones then you'll get a lot of enjoyment out of this book. If that strikes you as just a bit silly, never mind that these same billionaires think the best design person in the world is a comic book artist then you should probably steer clear. I read it all the way through but then I did it to save you the pain. You owe me.