A solar powered girl. A ballerina vigilante. A boy with an alien living inside his brain. A werewolf with confidence issues. A girl with a black hole for a heart. Five teenagers, each with their own unique abilities, are gathered by veteran hero Doc Silence to become their generation’s super-team. But when they find out someone else is building their own monsters to change the world, will the Indestructibles be ready in time? Or will their inexperience be their downfall?
Both a coming of age adventure and a love letter to comic book heroes, The Indestructibles, the first book by author Matthew Phillion, is the story of five reluctant super-powered teenagers as they set out to save the world while trying to figure out their own place in it.
“It’s an origin story,” says Phillion. He had developed the characters individually for years before realizing they worked best as a unified team, playing off each others’ quirks, strengths, and weaknesses. “They’re out to save the world, but at times their greatest challenges are their own insecurities and doubts. It’s only after they learn about themselves that they can change the world.”
Superheronovels.com calls the book “indefatigably entertaining,” and writes: “At the beginning of the novel, the Indestructibles weren’t very indestructible. During their first official mission, for example, they looked like a bunch of toddlers in a bouncy castle. But over time, and through experience and good-fellowship, they figured out how to become superheroes. ‘Every so often humanity gets lucky and a hero is born,’ says Doc Silence. ‘And these heroes shine in the sun.’ Three cheers for Solar, Dancer, Fury, Straylight, and Entropy: the five brightest stars in the sky.”
While each of the heroes undergoes a transformative journey, The Indestructibles isn’t just about introspection – the characters must face down everything from a sentient hurricane to giant monsters, armed robots, out of control cyborgs, evil magicians, and even each other.
Sci-fi fans will find a lot of winks and nods to the decades of genre classics that helped inspire the story.
“It’s a self-aware book,” says Phillion. “These characters grew up in a world with its own super-powered heroes, but also a sense of history and pop culture shared with our own. It is almost impossible to tell a story like this without tipping your hat to the past, and the characters, without breaking the fourth wall, are able to let the readers in on the secret handshakes of this genre.”
Phillion wanted this story to avoid the sense that it was a “book for boys” or “book for girls” by focusing on challenges both universal and uniquely personal.
“Each of our heroes must combat the problems inherent with being a young person with their own fantastic challenges – setting barns on fire with your thoughts, sharing your brain with an alien – in a realistic, relatable way,” says Phillion. “They each have a part to play in making the world a better place, but they have to learn how to get out of their own way to get there.”
Pop culture blogger Peter Chianca writes: “The Indestructibles is a so-called YA novel, although to quote Stephen Colbert, that usually just means it’s a regular novel that people actually read. And this one is definitely well-suited to your average 12-year-old superhero fanatic. But if you’re like some of us, you have an inner 12-year-old that you can access at a moment’s notice… and if that’s you, and you know who you are, you’ll probably get as much out of the Indestructibles as any [younger]superhero junkie.”
The Indestructibles is the first in an ongoing series. Book 2, the Indestructibles: Breakout, will arrive in print and e-book formats this October.
Phillion has worked as a journalist, writer, and editor for almost 20 years. He is also the writer, director, and producer of the feature film “Certainly Never,” a romantic comedy about what he calls “the stupid things we do to try to find our own happiness.” “Certainly Never” premiered at the 2013 Massachusetts Independent Film Festival.
Print copies of The Indestructibles are available from independent bookstores everywhere, Ingram, Baker & Taylor, and Books-A-Million (BAM) as well as from Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Digital versions are available in Barnes & Noble NookBook, Amazon Kindle, Apple iBook and Kobo eBook formats.