Monday, March 7, 2022

Secret Identity by Alex Segura

Secret Identity Secret Identity by Alex Segura
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

When I first heard about @alexsegurajr’s SECRET IDENTITY, a noir murder mystery set in the world of 1970s comic book publishers, I knew right off I wanted to read it. What I wasn’t expecting was in addition to the murder mystery, Segura also delivers a story dealing with the hyper-sexist world of comic books in the 70s (which is still prevalent today, unfortunately), as seen through the eyes of the protagonist, Carmen Valdez, who desperately wants to break into the comics business as a writer, but being a woman means that is almost impossible for her. When she is finally presented the opportunity to help create a female hero for the company where she works as a secretary, she thinks she’s found her chance. However, when she’s convinced by her partner, Harvey, to keep her part in the Legendary Lynx’s creation a secret and Harvey is subsequently murdered, Carmen must find out what happened to Harvey if she’s ever going to be able to prove she is really the brains behind the Lynx.

What’s already a great story is improved on with interspersed pages of the comic Carmen helped create. These glimpses into what The Legendary Lynx comics would have looked like just add more of a real-world feel to the story, which is already sprinkled throughout with the names of actual comics greats from the time.

As a lifelong comic book fan myself, I really enjoyed the setting for SECRET IDENTITY, and I wish I could actually read The Legendary Lynx. The murder mystery is well-paced, the characters are all fleshed out and feel real, the writing creates the dirty feel of NYC in the 70s… this is just a great book overall. SECRET IDENTITY by Alex Segura will hit shelves March 15, 2022.

A huge thanks to @flatiron_books and @goodreads for the advanced copy of SECRET IDENTITY in exchange for an honest review.

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