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Superhero Syndrome

Solstice Survivors, Book 1
Narrated by: Ruby Hankey
Series: Solstice Survivors Series, Book 1
Length: 7 hrs and 55 mins
4 out of 5 stars (15 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Tess McBray was dying. The solstice syndrome had no cure, and she resigned herself to an early grave. But just when she gave up on survival, all her symptoms mysteriously disappeared.  

All but one symptom, anyway. Something is wrong with Tess’ hands. They absorb any material they touch, and her skin turns to wood, steel, or concrete. It doesn’t take this comic book obsessed 21-year-old long to figure out what’s going on: Somehow, she’s developed super powers. And she’s not the only one; across the country, people are coming forward and sharing their gifts with the world. In her own city, where the police are battling a human trafficking operation, a masked vigilante called The Fox is saving lives and stopping criminals.  

Tess doesn’t know where she fits into this new, super-powered world. But when people around her start disappearing, she can’t just sit on the sidelines. Teaming up with The Fox to create the world’s first superhero duo might be the only way to rid her city of evil and save the people she loves most.

©2017 Caryn Larrinaga (P)2019 Caryn Larrinaga

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

"Origin" story with great characters and narration

“Superhero Syndrome (Solstice Survivors #1)” is not lesfic, but is a very enjoyable interpretation of the superhero/supervillain origin genre.

The author did a wonderful job defining characters as believable people, with many of the positive and negative attributes on exhibit IRL: fear, friendship, love, hate, lust, forgiveness, cruelty, greed, goodness…and many other emotions and behaviors. I was reminded of early Fantastic Four or Spiderman stories, where ordinary people gain extraordinary abilities and learn to adapt to their changed lives.

It’s fun being alongside MC Tess as she finds that her death is suddenly not imminent, and as she finds that something is..different. As Tess returns to her hometown, she learns more of the sister she loves, the brother-in-law she despises, the parents who abandoned her, and she makes new friends.

Descriptions of her daily life are very well written. We learn of Tess’ love of trains, and we can feel the wrongness in the run down section of town that she now calls home. There’s lots of humor throughout the story; imagine having a superpower that allows your hands to become blue office furniture upholstery! Also, imagine your sister creating an online dating profile for “Sexy Tessy” and using an old childhood photo…including braces! While Tess and other characters are hetero, this is a very PG story, nothing graphic occurs.

Tess is very likable, as are many of the side characters. Though Tess is a nerd who loves comic books and sketching, she’s socially aware enough to know a bad date when she’s on one, and is willing to make an effort to ask out someone she connects with.

Once she becomes something of a sidekick to superhero “The Fox”, we get a very entertaining crime/mystery action story involving sex trafficking. I won’t say much more about that because you’ll enjoy the story without spoilers.

The story ends with a new costume and superheroine name for Tess, and she and “The Fox” are flying (via plane) to Chicago for a first-ever meetup with other new supers. I can’t wait for the next episode!

This is the first audiobook I’ve listened to narrated by Ruby Hankey, and I really enjoyed her performance. She voiced Tess, her inner monologues, and other characters wonderfully, and I very much look forward to listening to her perform other audiobooks!

If you’ve read this far, you may have guessed that I really enjoyed this audiobook, and I recommend “Superhero Syndrome” with 5*.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

My rating and my review was not in anyway affected by my having been provided a review copy.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Dee
  • LA
  • 08-10-19

Excellent narration!

I loved this very inventive story but I must start with the narration. Hankey has an incredible voice with incredible delivery and she made this story come alive! I was hooked from the first intonation.

The story had a slow build-up to the superhero part but I was okay with that. (Again, great narration.) Tess is the main character and instead of dying from an incurable disease, she was exposed to a meteor and life began. Her superpower was one I had not seen before and listening to her struggle with her discovery and then how to control it was well-written and performed. I must confess that Tess was a bit hard to take at times but again, narration.

The bad guys got dealt with and all ended well. The next book will be next level!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Something fresh and new

Superhero Syndrome offers something a bit different than the norm in the Urban Fantasy genre. Superheroes certainly aren't new, and they are everywhere lately, but Carryn Larrinaga has managed to make them feel fresh and new with some interesting powers and witty characters. Of course, we can't have superheroes without some villains to pull them into the light, and these are definitely villainous. Between the bad guy characteristics and Ruby Hankey's voice to breathe life into them, I found myself picturing the villains of old, black cape and all. The story starts and continues a little slow for about the first third or so of the book, but I got caught up in Tess and her sickness despite the pacing. It does pick up considerably once Tess gets back to her hometown and starts to discover her unique power. Tess is strong-willed and I like that she stands on her own two feet, learning from her mistakes and moving forward and changing with the ever-changing world she's been thrust into. She does have some help by way of The Fox. I would've liked a little more development of The Fox's character as well as the sparks of romance between the pair, but it's more subtle hints of something more than friendship as this duo searches for missing women, including someone close to Tess. Nevertheless, I did like The Fox, and I hope to see his character grow with the series. The biggest drawback for me lay with the conclusion. It is the beginning of a series, but we still get a sufficient conclusion, but it felt like there was a rush to get to the end. I just felt like the conclusion deserved more after all the buildup. That said, I did enjoy the read and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys superheroes and/or urban fantasy.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

stunning

i absolutely loved this story. The creative aspect of how people got powers, the perspective and background of Tess. the side characters abed overall plot were really well done. but i have to say. the narrator took this audiobook to a whole new level. absolutely amazing.


i recieved this as a free copy, but my opinions are my own

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Fun superhero book with a comic book lover lead

I received this audiobook as part of my participation in a blog tour with Audiobookworm Promotions. The tour is being sponsored by Caryn Larrinaga. The gifting of this audiobook did not affect my opinion of it.

Superhero Syndrome is a fun read/listen taking a weak and sickly main character and turning her into something quite awesome.

Tess loves comic books and superheroes, but she is very ill and knows she will not be around much longer. Until something happens and mysteriously her fever goes away and she's found some new powers! This comic book obsessed girl accepts her superpowers but tries to hide them. 

Until, someone she loves is in danger. I enjoyed how dark and interwoven the superpowers were with the evil doings of the villains. The story got dark quickly with the missing girls and finally, the disappearance hits close to home. Tess has to learn to be brave and use her powers to help save the missing girls.

I gotta say though the comic-book obsessed girl should have been a little faster to figure out who The Fox is. I have read enough of these type of books to know who the secret identity was going to be, so Tess should have guessed too. But otherwise, the book was great.

I enjoyed the audio narration quite a bit. The voice was pleasant and I would definitely want to listen to her again.  

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Unique, powerful, fun

This was a very different take on the super hero genre, and a TON of fun while also giving some powerful messages.

I found the identity of The Fox a bit predictable, but as fun as this book was it was easy to ignore this.

Both the story and the performance easily sucked me in and left me wanting more. I hope the series continues and plan to check out all the future books in the series.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair review.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Not what I was expecting.

I believe the story was well written, though I did feel like a few things were not adequately explained. I assume we will learn about those later as the series progresses. The book took a couple of turns I was not expecting, diving into topics that I don’t often see written about in this genre. I feel like it did a good job of describing those, and all of the characters actions seemed logical.
Narration was done well, and though at times volume would peak it was not too distracting. It only happened three or four times during the novel, Maybe something to do with compression.
I received this audiobook at my request, and am voluntarily leaving this review. That being said, I’m not certain if I will continue the series. however I do feel like this was a worthwhile read! If the foreshadowing is doing what I think it is, the series may turn into something I would deeply enjoy!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Excelsio

This was a very fun and fast book for me, I could not put it down, I am looking forward to the next book! I hope Bear will get his own costume!

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Colleen
  • Indianapolis, IN, United States
  • 07-23-19

Wow!

Wow! I loved every second of this audible book! I was hooked right away. The story flowed flawlessly from beginning to end, all the characters were likable, and the world the author built is believable. The narrator, Ruby Hankey, has a very pleasant voice and does a fantastic job with all of the characters. All I can say is Yes! Yes! Yes! I love it and I want more Superhero Syndrome!!! I'm looking forward to Book 2!!! I was incredibly lucky to have this audio book gifted to me by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Old subject, new dressing

This was a pretty cool read, and I liked that Tess's superpower wasn't something I had expected. A sequel would be nice!

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  • Selina ryles
  • 08-11-19

A quirky and entertaining read

I am a big fan of the DC and Marvel series so this book just appealed to me from the offset . I adore the fact that there is such a strong female lead who is different and completely stands out in the novel . Whilst the book is quirky and highly entertaining I just felt there was something missing for me that I couldn't put my finger on . The narration was clear and easy on the ears . While the book wasnt exactly for me I feel it is a strong novel that will be loved by many. I was given this book by the author/narrator in return for an honest and unbiased review