Book Review – Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

batman nightwalker cover

Series: DC Icons (book #2)

Rating: 4 stars

star rating 4

“Fear clears the mind. Panic clouds it.”

Batman: Nightwalker is the second installment in the DC Icons series and it follows young Bruce Wayne as a group of extremists called Nightwalkers terrorize Gotham City. The series started last year with the release of Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo, and it will continue in August with Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas, and in 2019 with Superman: Dawnbreaker by Matt de la Peña.

I enjoyed this book more than I expected. I had seen mixed reviews about it so I lowered my expectations, even if this was still one of my most anticipated books of the year. Maybe it has to do with the fact that I’ve always liked Batman and his world, and that I grew up watching cartoons like Batman: The Animated Series and Justice League Unlimited, but it turns out that I really had a good time while reading this.

This book is very short, about 250 pages I believe, but somehow I didn’t find it to be rushed. I think Marie Lu told the story she needed to tell, though I did take one star off of it because Bruce made some questionable decisions without properly planning things. Considering Batman‘s usual ‘I have a plan to deal with everything and everyone including my superfriends‘ kind of nature, I feel like he should’ve been more careful in that sense, even if he hadn’t taken on The Dark Knight persona yet. The issue here is not about him running towards danger, and more about him not having much of a solid plan when he does so.

The Luthors and Metropolis got name dropped, which was cool, and Lucius Fox was around throughout the book. It was also interesting seeing Bruce being friends with Harvey Dent, since Gotham‘s future district attorney later becomes the villain Two Face. Oh, and Madeleine gave me lots of Harley Quinn mixed with Catwoman vibes. Her interactions with Bruce kept me hooked, I’ve always liked the psychological aspect and complexity of Batman‘s relationships with women, and I believe this was represented here. I think that’s why their, well, relationship, was the most interesting thing in this book for me.

You know, I wanted to see a bit more of Alfred in action and to be honest, I wish there was a sequel for this book. There’s so much that could be explored, Batman has a great lore and gallery of villains, which I would love to read more about in novel format. I’d recommend this book if you want a quick superhero read – and if you like Batman, naturally. The story has action, but I think the psychological aspect is the stronger one here, so keep that in mind.

At this point, I feel like I forgot how to read standalones and let go of the story, unless they’re fluffy contemporaries, but at least there’s Catwoman‘s book coming out soon. I hope it’s good and that it does Selina Kyle justice. It would be nice if we could see a bit of her and Bruce interact in her novel, but I doubt he’ll show up there.

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