Wow, what a ride. I feel like I have been tossed around by a herd of maybe-corrupt maybe-well-meaning superheroes. Suffering Sappho I loved it, but also, being an old lady who loves YA has its detriments; most of all that I want to scoop up all the young protagonists and give them better lives and destroy everyone and everything that hurts them, up to and including the kyriarchy.
When a superhero dies at the feet of Danny Tozer, she doesn't only inherit his superpowers--she gains the physical body she's wanted all her life. Her parents are garbage fires and the superhero regime--yes, there's a regime--has their own intentions for her newfound powers. While navigating life in high school as her true self with all the shittiness that happens to teen girls, she befriends a greycape--a vigilante superhero, Calamity, who works outside the law to bring justice. Determined to hunt down the supervillainess that killed the original Dreadnought, they end up tangled in an epic battle with oppressive politics, dangerous technology, and life as we know it under threat.
April Daniels has created a deep superhero lore in the Nemesis books, and I loved finding out more about the Pacific Northwest in the age of superheros. Heavy is the head that wears the superhero cowl, and Danny's got the world to deal with. The novel is about superheros and the price of saving the world, and it is also about the indomitable spirit of Danny and how she survives abuse and systemic transphobia. But--she is also a teen, and she's hilarious and snarky and has great allies in Calamity the greycape and Doc Impossible, superhero doctor and her first ally in her new life. Dreadnought is a wild ride with high stakes and high adventure, and not everyone turns out okay in the end--however, it's an incredible and important story. So highly recommended, and can't wait for the next one!
I let go of speed and coast, floating so high the planet curves away from me in all directions. Earth is gauzy blue at the edges. There are lightning storms in Canada, and wildfires in Mexico. All of humanity is pinpricks of light beneath me. The silence up here is perfect. I can see forever.
And I see.
I see a world that is terrified of me. Terrified of someone who would reject manhood. Terrified of a girl who knows who she is and what she's capable of. They are small, and they are weak, and they will not hurt me ever again.
My name is Danielle Tozer. I am a girl.
No one is strong enough to take that from me anymore.
April Daniels: Website
Acquisitions: I received a free copy from Netgalley.com in return for an honest review