Sunday, August 7, 2016

If Book Characters Were Superheroes: Incredibles Edition

Graphic made by Alexandria @ The Book's Buzz
A few months ago, I signed up to be a part of Read Write Love 28's Book Blogger Creativity Project, an initiative that matches bloggers into groups that are then tasked with thinking of an idea for a fun, creative blog post.

I was wary when my group first tossed out the idea of matching superheroes with book characters—I've never been a fan of Superman or Batman or gotten excited over the release of a new Avengers movie. I quickly realized, however, that I do love animated children's movies and that I could base my post on the Pixar classic The Incredibles. So with that, here are five books you should read based on their characters' resemblance to the super-powered Parr family. (The Incredibles character descriptions are pulled from the Disney website.)

"Mr. Incredible is a superhero with great strength and durability. In his everyday life, he goes by the name Bob Parr."
At the beginning of Unremembered, Seraphina has just awoken in a hospital room, not knowing who she is or where she came from. She doesn't know why she was the only one to survive a devastating plane crash in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, and she doesn't know why she has unparalleled strength, speed, endurance, intelligence, and more. Readers unravel more and more of her hidden identity as the science fiction trilogy continues, but one thing is certain from the start: Seraphina has powers exceeding those of a human, just like Mr. Incredible.

"Helen Parr, known as Elastigirl, is a resourceful and dexterous superhero."
How could I pick any characters other than extremely-talented ballerinas to compare to a woman who can stretch and contort her body into inconceivable shapes to do her bidding? Aside from contortionists, dancers and gymnasts may be the closest people we have to real-life Elastigirls. And even better, the characters in Tiny Pretty Things spend the entire novel competing to be the best at what they do, resulting in gripping and intense drama that had me riveted (and, especially now that it's been released, ecstatic to pick up the sequel).

"Violet Parr is the daughter of Bob and Helen Parr. She has the ability to produce force-fields and turn invisible."
While no one in Six of Crows has the power to become invisible like Violet, one of its six main characters, Inej, comes close. Trained as an acrobat, she can sneak stealthily in any situation, spy on outside conversations, and take roundabout paths to avoid being seen. She may as well have an invisibility cloak—or, like Violet, have the power to simply disappear.

"Dashiell Robert 'Dash' Parr is at age 10 the elder son of Bob and Helen Parr. He has the ability to move at great speeds."
I've read very few YA books with characters who participate in track and field (in fact, I've read very few books with athletic characters in general), but I loved the role the main character's sport plays in None of the Above. The story follows Kristin as she finds out she's intersex, and the fact that she is a superstar hurdler and runner both impacts and is impacted by her discovery of her newfound medical condition. Although this protagonist may not be able to run quite as quickly as Dash, she certainly has a talent for speed—and she faces tough situations with strength worthy of a superhero.

"Jack-Jack is the youngest child in the Parr family. His primary power is shapeshifting, but has a large number of other powers."
In an alternate post-World War II landscape, protagonist Yael has joined a moment whose goal is to take down the all-ruling Axis powers of the Third Reich and Imperial Japan. Thanks to a failed Nazi medical experimentation, she has the power to shape-shift. Her plan? Impersonate a famous motorcycle racer; compete in the Axis Tour; and win, earning herself an invitation to the Victor's Ball, where she'll have the opportunity to assassinate Hitler. The result is a thrilling, complex story about survival on the road and an imperative mission that reads exactly like a superhero story.

What YA characters do you think are worthy of superhero titles? Let me know in the comments. 

And P.S.—Forever Literary is going to be a bit quiet in the upcoming month or so as I spend the next week traveling and then leave for college! I'm planning to return full-force in early- to mid-September, but bear with me as I adjust to the major life changes that are coming up. 


  1. Haha, using the Incredibles is brilliant! I loved that movie as a kid. I definitely agree about the dancers from Tiny Pretty Things being the mom, that's spot on. Loved this!

  2. OMG THE INCREDIBLES :D I think they're making a second movie?? VERY EXCITED :D
    I've only read Wolf by Wolf - but Jack-Jack is a perfect one to be paired up with that book! :D

  3. this is so creative! Your group did a great job. :D I love The Incredibles too!


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