Starter Villain

272 pages

English language

Published Jan. 5, 2023 by Doherty Associates, LLC, Tom.

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4 stars (16 reviews)

Inheriting your mysterious uncle's supervillain business is more complicated than you might imagine.

Sure, there are the things you'd expect. The undersea volcano lairs. The minions. The plots to take over the world. The international networks of rivals who want you dead.

Much harder to get used to...are the the sentient, language-using, computer-savvy cats.

And the fact that in the overall organization, they're management...

3 editions

A fun, fast-paced modern satire

5 stars

This was a quick and easy read, with the plot zipping along at a rapid pace and not too many characters or complicated ideas to get straight in your head.

It's a fun parody of James Bond style villains but also quite a good satire of California techbros, VC funding, and mega-billionaires. If any of that group are on your "I don't like these people" list, you'll probably enjoy this book!

Starter Villain

4 stars

A classic Scalzi one-shot novel--a fluffy snack with some good twists.

The basic setup is that down-on-his-luck Charlie Fitzer unexpectedly inherits his estranged billionaire uncle's villainous empire and now has to fend with other villains who were pissed at his uncle.

Key features:

  • volcano lair
  • jerk dolphins who want to unionize
  • zoom call power plays

If you read one book this year, make it this one... great fun!

5 stars

As I listened to this on my morning walks, I was caught cackling with laughter several times by my fellow neighborhood walkers. I’m pretty sure they wonder about me now. My sister and I also exchanged texts with some of the funniest lines.

Chapter four is the funniest funeral ever. Anyone receiving flowers and a vase with “Suck MFer,” can’t be all bad… right?!?!

Then there are the dolphins. Totally hard core, and death by “mass dolphin gender identification,” sounds pretty horrible.

The Pitch and Pitch, was also super fun. “Tetsticles as a service.” Bwahahaha!

The book didn’t end the way I expected. I kind of wanted an ending with a “to be continued…” motif, but one-shot books are great too. No worries about setting up another plot, so the ending is clean.

Charlie and Matti are great. I was pleased with how that relationship went. I was worried for …

A fun, fast read, parodying the James Bond Villain archetype. With talking dolphins and typing cats.

4 stars

A fun, fast read, parodying the James Bond Villain archetype. The main character is dropped into the deep end of supervillain society, complete with double-crosses, triple-crosses, assassination attempts, blackmail, framing...and of course the secret volcanic lair, superlasers, talking dolphins (who are really unpleasant and cranky) and a management layer of typing cats (who are much less so, depending on how well you feed and pet them).

Everyone knows he's way out of his depth and wants to take advantage of him. But he knows it too -- and between a background in business journalism and a willingness to listen to people with expertise (always considering that they have an agenda that might not be his own), he's able to manage better than anyone expects.

Of course, the skills that get you to the top of the backstabbing, chaotic world of villainy...aren't necessarily the best for financial stability. Or stability of …

How to be a villian, but not be too evil.

4 stars

A humorous and interesting story involving the usual clueless main character who discovers that he has been given a massive inheritance from a deceased relative. Only here, the relative is an uncle who turns out to have been a villain (complete with evil volcanic lair) who now wants him to run his evil empire.

As the story develops, it turns out the empire he inherits is not quite so evil after all. It does work for various governments and agencies. But it then quietly reuses the technology developed for other purposes. For example, a laser technology used to make rain gets repurposed (and boosted) to take down satellites (yes, it does get used in the story).

The main story involves the character interacting with other villains in the world who, while not plotting to take over the world, do want to accumulate vast wealth. And the death of his uncle …

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