Book Battle: Blackout vs Xmen

I just finished listening to Blackout by Robison Wells and couldn’t help but notice the similarities to the Xmen. I’m a pretty big fan of the super hero, so this translates to the fact that I liked the book. Here’s the low down on Blackout:

The book takes place in modern America and opens with three teens who have special abilities and are using them to act as terrorists. Then it switches to a single teen at a school dance who is using her special ability (invisibility) to spy on boys. She does not use her ability for good, but she’s no terrorist. The US armed forces bust in on the dance and take all the teens to “camp” (very reminiscent of Nazi concentration camps) where they are swabbed to find out if they have the virus that causes special abilities or not. The teens that have the virus are sent to prison cells and those without the virus are sent to live in tent camps and not allowed to return home. As a matter of fact, there are two thirty foot high, barbed wire fences to ensure they don’t leave camp. I am going to tell you more about the plot, but I will tell you it is a really good read. I am turning into Robison Wells fan and can’t wait for the sequel to this book. I’ve blogged about his other series, Variant here:

So, how does this compare to Xmen:
teens who discover they have abilities (superpowers) that manifest when they are teens: check
teens with abilities are sought out and sent to a special location: check
some of the teens are recruited for good purposes: check
some of the teens are recruited for not so good purposes: check
teens with abilities being used as weapons: check
Charles Xavier and Magneto: nope

Here are some of the abilities of the teens in Variant:
super senses
hot breath (yes, you read that right)
super strength
mind control
ability to manipulate “earth” (i.e., cause avalanches)
and more….

I promise you, if you like Xmen, if you like superheroes, you will like this book. It’s one of the best I have read in a while.