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Captain America: Dark Designs Prose Novel

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Captain America has battled soldiers, terrorists and villains of all kinds. Now he'll face a far more complicated enemy: his own body. When S.H.I.E.L.D. discovers that Cap is harboring an extinction-level pathogen hidden in his cells for decades, Cap's greatest fear is realized: Until the virus can be cured, he'll have to go into deep freeze. But he won't be alone. Years a Captain America has battled soldiers, terrorists and villains of all kinds. Now he'll face a far more complicated enemy: his own body. When S.H.I.E.L.D. discovers that Cap is harboring an extinction-level pathogen hidden in his cells for decades, Cap's greatest fear is realized: Until the virus can be cured, he'll have to go into deep freeze. But he won't be alone. Years ago, Cap's greatest enemy managed the biggest coup of his career when he implanted his mind into a clone of Steve Rogers' body - virus and all. And Red Skull isn't the sacrificial type. Cap will have to put his archnemesis on ice - without exposing the virus. Can Cap stay alive along enough to capture Red Skull and return to his deepest nightmare? It's a battle for perfect symmetry in this original prose novel!


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Captain America has battled soldiers, terrorists and villains of all kinds. Now he'll face a far more complicated enemy: his own body. When S.H.I.E.L.D. discovers that Cap is harboring an extinction-level pathogen hidden in his cells for decades, Cap's greatest fear is realized: Until the virus can be cured, he'll have to go into deep freeze. But he won't be alone. Years a Captain America has battled soldiers, terrorists and villains of all kinds. Now he'll face a far more complicated enemy: his own body. When S.H.I.E.L.D. discovers that Cap is harboring an extinction-level pathogen hidden in his cells for decades, Cap's greatest fear is realized: Until the virus can be cured, he'll have to go into deep freeze. But he won't be alone. Years ago, Cap's greatest enemy managed the biggest coup of his career when he implanted his mind into a clone of Steve Rogers' body - virus and all. And Red Skull isn't the sacrificial type. Cap will have to put his archnemesis on ice - without exposing the virus. Can Cap stay alive along enough to capture Red Skull and return to his deepest nightmare? It's a battle for perfect symmetry in this original prose novel!

30 review for Captain America: Dark Designs Prose Novel

  1. 4 out of 5

    DJ

    A very solid four star book. Disclaimer: I LOVE CAPTAIN AMERICA! The one from Marvel Cineverse more than any. Which is where most of my Cap knowledge comes from. I do not have a clue as to whether Dark Designs is from the graphic novels...I will say that I did google and amazon the title and only came up with copies of this specific novel, leading me to believe it's an original story. First, I must mention the cover under the book jacket. Gorgeous silver foiling create Cap's shield and letters on A very solid four star book. Disclaimer: I LOVE CAPTAIN AMERICA! The one from Marvel Cineverse more than any. Which is where most of my Cap knowledge comes from. I do not have a clue as to whether Dark Designs is from the graphic novels...I will say that I did google and amazon the title and only came up with copies of this specific novel, leading me to believe it's an original story. First, I must mention the cover under the book jacket. Gorgeous silver foiling create Cap's shield and letters on the spine on a matte black finish had cover. Beautiful! Second, while this book isn't a graphic novel by any means, it does have some art...every two to four chapters. Not many pages, but very nice. The images are grey-scale (black & white), clearly drawn and colored. A great surprise, because I wasn't expecting to find art at all in the pages of this book. Third, if I had to date this story, it would be somewhere after The Avengers and slightly before Captain America: Winter Soldier, movie wise. Though it does mention the Infinity Wars have happened already and the Cineverse isn't there yet. (They film next year.) So for my review: "Forty years. I'll wake up in a completely different world. Everyone I know will either be gone or nearing the end of their time. Again." That's always on my mind when I read/watch anything Cap. It's heartbreaking. This time, though, there is talk of sending him back into a deep freeze because Cap has picked up a viral pathogen. While it remains dormant in Steve Roger's blood, this pathogen has extinction level possibilities. Meaning Cap is in quarantine. Just as The Red Skull in Cap's clone (apparently that's a thing in the Marvel Universe not in the Cineverse) is calling forth Nazi Sleeper Robots. Why? Well, because he has the same virus as Cap, though his form is active. Zola, or the robotic consciousness of him, gives Red Skull some options, and Skull chose the Sleepers. "Hey, old man. Heard you got some kind of flu or something, so I figured I'd pitch in." That quote came from Tony Stark himself. While I have this "thing" about Iron Man hogging the spotlight from Cap's movie, I did enjoy his addition to the book. He's snarky, and quippy, and really plays off Steve's "living in a whole new world" thing...They were true comrades in the best sense. Working together to defeat the evils and keep the virus at bay. Nick Fury showed up, SHIELD still a force to be reckoned with (before Hydra took them down). He stuck fear in many a doctor and was as fun to have Samuel L Jackson's voice in my head along with Chris Evans and Robert Downey Jr. The three made for a great trio--one serious, one snarky, and one bad ass commander. There were no other Avengers/Captain America characters in the mix, but then the story didn't need them. It was strong and intriguing all on its own. WARNING: Some parts were intense and worrisome, which made for a great story. The beginning was horribly slow. A lot of mention of gun/tank specifics took the possibility of something awesome to begin the book. If the first chapter or two wasn't wholly necessary for some information that carries throughout the story, I'd say skip it. And because I love Falcon: Sam Wilson was only mentioned, never took part. It had been difficult, to be sure--especially when his first love, Peggy Carter--now in her eighties--said through her tears, "At least this time, I'll know where you are, that you're alive." Okay, so I cried... Peggy and Steve always... Anyway, this book was pleasantly entertaining. If it had less tedium upfront--I mean, I don't need to know every single gun the soldiers are carrying--this could have been five stars easily. *I NEED A HERO READ - MAY 2016 THEME* Going to definitely look into more of Marvel's prose novels, hopefully will find some of my favorite characters in there. (Ant-Man, Falcon, Winter Soldier...)

  2. 5 out of 5

    Long Live Wonderland

    After the events of the Civil War movie I pretty much lost all my respect for Captain America, purely because of all the pain he put Iron Man through. I'm Team Tony Stark all the way! But I would be lying if I said this book didn't make me want to respect Captain America again. Dark Designs featured not only Steve Rogers, but Nick Fury and Tony Stark as well. The book as a whole was great, but the ending felt kind of like a cop out to me. However, the epilogue was enough to keep me happy. After the events of the Civil War movie I pretty much lost all my respect for Captain America, purely because of all the pain he put Iron Man through. I'm Team Tony Stark all the way! But I would be lying if I said this book didn't make me want to respect Captain America again. Dark Designs featured not only Steve Rogers, but Nick Fury and Tony Stark as well. The book as a whole was great, but the ending felt kind of like a cop out to me. However, the epilogue was enough to keep me happy.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Bill Buckley

    Great story. Features not only Cap himself, but also Iron Man, (Stark), Nick Fury and the villain Red Skull. Also we saw the new Spiderman movie today. Tasha liked it a lot. I thought it was entertaining. But as I was telling her, it is the 7th Spiderman movie we've seen if you include his role in the Civil War movie. Entertaining, though and isn't that the point of these books and movies? Great story. Features not only Cap himself, but also Iron Man, (Stark), Nick Fury and the villain Red Skull. Also we saw the new Spiderman movie today. Tasha liked it a lot. I thought it was entertaining. But as I was telling her, it is the 7th Spiderman movie we've seen if you include his role in the Civil War movie. Entertaining, though and isn't that the point of these books and movies?

  4. 5 out of 5

    Tasha

    An action packed book. One boss battle after another.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Jamie Brackell

    The tenth title in Titan Books’ Marvel Fiction reissue program, Captain America: Dark Designs focuses on the ongoing conflict between arch-nemeses Steve Rogers and Johann Schmidt, better known as Captain America and the Red Skull. Rather than taking place in its own separate universe, this story actually references and builds upon two key moments within Captain America continuity; the time that Cap fought against the Sleeper robots in Tales of Suspense # 72-74, and the time that the Red Skull ha The tenth title in Titan Books’ Marvel Fiction reissue program, Captain America: Dark Designs focuses on the ongoing conflict between arch-nemeses Steve Rogers and Johann Schmidt, better known as Captain America and the Red Skull. Rather than taking place in its own separate universe, this story actually references and builds upon two key moments within Captain America continuity; the time that Cap fought against the Sleeper robots in Tales of Suspense # 72-74, and the time that the Red Skull had his memories implanted in the body of a Steve Rogers clone (Captain America # 350) by Arnim Zola. The novel provides enough backstory to explain these events to those unfamiliar with the original comics to ensure the story is accessible to all, but it is interesting to see the novel tied so tightly to the Marvel Comics continuity. Much like Superman over at DC Comics, Captain America has something of a “boy scout” quality to him and writer Stefan Petrucha explores the character’s inherent honour and willingness to sacrifice himself to do the right thing. Whilst reading, I often found myself recalling Chris Evans’ take on the character in the Marvel Cinematic Universe and how he puts his duty before his own personal gain. Petrucha challenges the character by giving him a threat that he can’t punch into submission, and forcing him to face his greatest fear – becoming frozen in time once again. While Cap’s conflicts with the multitude of Sleeper robots is entertaining and provides the reader with plenty of action set-pieces, it is his attempts to deal with the isolation brought on by the virus that really drives the narrative here. While this is undoubtedly a Captain America story, the novel also features some memorable guest appearances from Nick Fury and Iron Man as the pair attempt to support Cap during these testing times. These cameos help present the novel as part of the Marvel Universe where crossovers and team-ups between heroes are as frequent as alien attacks and radioactive experiments gone wrong. With the level of danger that occurs in this story, it would be remiss not to have a secondary superhero make an appearance and the unique friendship between Captain America and Tony Stark translates to prose just as well as it does to the panel and the big-screen. The highlight of the novel for me was the Red Skull segments and how Petrucha subverted the usual multi-layered machinations of the super-villain to instead present a dying man attempting to survive at any cost. Bad guys are always more interesting than the heroes, and this remains true for this novel as I found the sequences with the Red Skull to be the most engaging chapters of the book. Petrucha writes the Red Skull well, balancing his evilness and hatred for Captain America with his newfound desperation and weakness. There were a number of moments that subverted my expectations throughout the story, and it wasn’t until reading the twist-ending epilogue that I could see the eponymous ‘Dark Designs’ that were truly guiding the events. Outside of the Marvel Universe, it might be a twist too far – but this is a world where gods and monsters exist together. Moving from panel to prose effortlessly, Captain America: Dark Designs loses none of its impact as an action-packed adventure. Stefan Petrucha understands just what makes these characters tick as he places them both on an inevitable path towards a final conflict. A refreshing alternative to comics, this longer-paced narrative allows readers to spend a bit longer with the characters and feels just as big-budget as the latest cinematic entries.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Paperbacks

    I have to admit that when it comes to these Marvel tie in books I do have a bit of a soft spot for them. They are fun and easy reads and they are accessible for readers who only know Marvel via the Avengers films, like myself. Unsurprisingly, Dark Designs has a cinematic quality to it, plenty of big set pieces, explosions and battles, with enough nods to established characters which really help with visualisation. One of my favourite of the battles takes place in Paris starting at the Louvre and I have to admit that when it comes to these Marvel tie in books I do have a bit of a soft spot for them. They are fun and easy reads and they are accessible for readers who only know Marvel via the Avengers films, like myself. Unsurprisingly, Dark Designs has a cinematic quality to it, plenty of big set pieces, explosions and battles, with enough nods to established characters which really help with visualisation. One of my favourite of the battles takes place in Paris starting at the Louvre and covering the length and breadth of the city all the way to a climactic finish in the Seine – this is of course helped immensely by the arrival of Tony Stark who actually steals the show for most of this book. There is amazing banter from him as always which was much needed as actually, for a Captain America book, I felt that his character came across as pretty flat. He was almost secondary to the sinister Red Skull, who I think may have appeared in a series of S.H.E.I.L.D once, he felt very familiar, but utterly insane! His sinister presence is actually pretty chilling at times as he releases a series of Sleepers born out of WWII Nazi tech, the liberties taken though with the technological capabilities of the time are those which can only be taken with a comic book edge! The presence of Dr N’Tomo as well was fabulous, Black Panther is one of my favourite films of the Marvelverse, so the talk of Wakanda was very welcome – although sadly shows how chronically underrepresented female characters are in the book. It does feel formulaic at times, but i think with these books a linear style works because you always know what you’re going to get and in part is what makes these enjoyable reads, I really enjoyed the addition of the artwork in some of the chapters too, it was interesting to see more of the graphic novel versions of Captain America and was a nice touch. The epilogue was great too, really unexpected and puts quite the slant on things, it was a great way to end the story. An enjoyable 3.5 Stars for this little slice of the Marvel Universe.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I chose to round down to two stars for my review of "Dark Designs," by Stefan Petrucha. It's a tale of Captain America versus the Red Skull in the modern era with a world-ending pandemic in the mix. That virus has been inside Captain America since he was frozen in ice during World War Two. When the Red Skull and Arnim Zola cloned a new body for the Red Skull from Captain America's DNA, the virus was replicated as well. Fast forward to the 00's and the Red Skull is dying from the virus and Captai I chose to round down to two stars for my review of "Dark Designs," by Stefan Petrucha. It's a tale of Captain America versus the Red Skull in the modern era with a world-ending pandemic in the mix. That virus has been inside Captain America since he was frozen in ice during World War Two. When the Red Skull and Arnim Zola cloned a new body for the Red Skull from Captain America's DNA, the virus was replicated as well. Fast forward to the 00's and the Red Skull is dying from the virus and Captain America is asymptomatic. But viral experts say that Cap should be frozen or incinerated to stop a potential world-ending plague from spreading. Seeing his death rapidly approaching, the Red Skull activates some World War Two-era Nazi robotic technology to finally bring down Captain America. Iron Man/Tony Stark joins in to help fight the robotic devices and work on a cure for Captain America. Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. also get heavily involved in the situation. I had a few problems with "Dark Designs." Overall, the story isn't that interesting. It lags a lot, especially during the "fighting the Nazi robots" parts, which take up a BIG chunk of the novel. Also, Captain America is so heroic and righteous that he's pretty darn dull to read about. I fully expected him to eat a lot of bran and poop and American flag at some point. For me, the most entertaining parts of the novel were the Red Skull and Arnim Zola making like the Odd Couple and when the Red Skull is directly interacting with Captain America. And I have no idea what they were thinking with the cover art. Captain America looks like a frail teenager, not the Nazi-stomping hero of the USA. If you're a big fan of these Marvel Comics novelizations or Captain America, you may enjoy this novel. But I think there are FAR better options for your reading time out there. Also, does anyone really want to read about a possible world-ending pandemic right now...?

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sarah S

    We listened to the GraphicAudio audiobook for this story, which was the expected high quality production with great voice actors, sound effects, etc. The story itself was a bit... obvious. To the extent that we almost didn't finish the book, but there wasn't anything better to do so inertia. We listened to the GraphicAudio audiobook for this story, which was the expected high quality production with great voice actors, sound effects, etc. The story itself was a bit... obvious. To the extent that we almost didn't finish the book, but there wasn't anything better to do so inertia.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Scott

    Interesting story and a fun read. Recommended or any Capital fan.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Adrian Montanez

    Captain America and Marvel's Coronavirus. Yeah, that title really pop's out doesn't it? This was an unexpectedly satisfying read. I started this book like most of my Marvel prose novels with the intent to just sit back and read my latest superhero adventure. This started off strong given the fact that it deals with the dangers of a mass outbreak of rabies throughout some parts of Africa. Now, this was interesting to me given the theories that most of the internet had about COVID-19 being a weapon Captain America and Marvel's Coronavirus. Yeah, that title really pop's out doesn't it? This was an unexpectedly satisfying read. I started this book like most of my Marvel prose novels with the intent to just sit back and read my latest superhero adventure. This started off strong given the fact that it deals with the dangers of a mass outbreak of rabies throughout some parts of Africa. Now, this was interesting to me given the theories that most of the internet had about COVID-19 being a weaponized virus. The conflict was obviously resolved by the Sentinel of Liberty himself, but as we head out to get checked out to see if the super-soldier serum can hold out against rabies we find something so much worse. It would seem that good old Captain America has been transporting a strain of an Extinction Level Virus since he was thawed out of the ice. This virus is extremely contagious and deadly; so, now Cap has to go into quarantine while they figure out a way to exterminate the virus. I could see the parallels with our current situation and they terrified and excited me. Stefan Petrucha saw 2020 coming. But sadly as in every superhero comic book, trouble waits for no hero. There are dark designs transpiring in the background that are gunning for the First Avenger. Now Captain America has to watch and wait as different World War II nazi machines wreak havoc throughout the world all in the hope of drawing him out and exterminating him. The colossus spoke again: "Wenn Kapitän Amerika ist nicht hier innerhalb enire stunde, werden viele zivilisten sterben." ... The translation appeared on their screens: "If Captain America is not here within an hour many civilians will die." So the good Captain has to fight some Nazis all while avoiding spreading the virus. The Dark Designs:(view spoiler)[Now if you have been up to date in Captain America comics up to the time of this release, you'll know that the Red Skull is actually using Cap's cloned body that was horribly malformed due to a Death serum/virus. Anyway, this apparently caused the virus to mutate and he contracted a contagious strain that is slowly but surely killing him. So in normal Red Skull fashion, he decides that if Captain America isn't going to die from the virus then he'll kill him before he expires. (hide spoiler)] All in all this book was filled with action, suspense, and surprises. If you're looking for a good Captain America adventure then this book is for you. And if you stick to the epilogue you will be glad and thankful that COVID-19 isn't this virus. An extinction level virus's introspection:(view spoiler)[ It's not about the individual It's about the design, the pattern. Oh, dying would matter to them, of course. No one wants to die. But kill them all and what does it matter? Death only matters to those left behind. If they're all gone, what's left to care? The sky? The planet? The stars? No. History doesn't exist without someone reading it. History is also written by the winner. If they're gone, no one will fret their questions or ponder their existence. No one except me. I'll be the only one deciding what they are worth. So why shouldn't I decide if they live? If something's about to destroy you, the obvious choice is to destroy it first. But is it so easy to destroy if it's the most astonishing thing you've ever seen? How do you decide if it's worth the risk? But why would I ever value anything more than myself? In the end, what's worth more–me, or the things that make me feel alive? If I try to be objective, it's like trying to pick one snowflake over another. If I were as callous as the stars, I'd flip a coin. But that would be the same as not deciding at all. It can't just be luck that decides for me, it has to be the pattern. The design. If I had a million years, I could think through to certainty, but I don't. I have to decide–and soon. True beauty that can make the very idea of luck seem meaningless, a placeholder for a lack of understanding. Wanting to preserve that beauty can't be pointless. Not to appreciate the beauty, well, that would be the very definition of pointlessness. But believing in beauty doesn't mean risking my life for it, does it? But if I sacrifice myself, I do it in secret. Who would know? Who would care? What would be left to fret my questions, to judge me good or ill? My history won't exist without someone to write it. I'd still remember them, though. If I survive, I may see their like again. Maybe in time, I'll see something better, even more with the risk. If I'm gone I won't see anything at all. And nothing wants to die. (hide spoiler)] 4.5 out of 5 stars.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Amy Walker - Trans-Scribe Reviews

    Captain America: Dark Designs is the latest Marvel prose book from Titan Books and author Stefan Petrucha, who has previously brought comic book characters to the world of prose having written Spider-Man: Forever Young, and Deadpool: Paws. Captain America: Dark Designs sees the iconic super soldier having to face an enemy that he's no equipped to beat, a virus. After a routine mission to stop the launch of a deadly pathogen Cap is examined on board the S.H.I.E.L.D. hellicarrier, where it's discov Captain America: Dark Designs is the latest Marvel prose book from Titan Books and author Stefan Petrucha, who has previously brought comic book characters to the world of prose having written Spider-Man: Forever Young, and Deadpool: Paws. Captain America: Dark Designs sees the iconic super soldier having to face an enemy that he's no equipped to beat, a virus. After a routine mission to stop the launch of a deadly pathogen Cap is examined on board the S.H.I.E.L.D. hellicarrier, where it's discovered that he is playing host to a virus that could wipe out all of humanity. To make matters worse, the Red Skull, who is living inside a cloned body of Captain America, also has the virus; though his has activated. The Red Skull launches an assault on Cap using a series of Nazi robots. Now Captain America must try to find a way to stop these deadly machines whilst not triggering an extinction level event. One of the biggest draws to comics is the artwork, and they way that it's used in super hero comics to create a level of action and spectacle that sometimes the written word can find difficult. Action scenes in books are great, but can sometimes feel like the weaker part of a story as the author tries to describe the amazing feats their characters are making. This is something that comics can sidestep, displaying amazing scenes across splash pages and dynamic panels. The problem when you take characters that we're used to reading in this one format and moving it to another is that you run the risk of the action becoming the weaker part of the story. Whilst Stefan Petrucha is able to tell great action scenes, and there are some great moments of action to be found in this book, it does feel a little like he's fallen into this pitfall here. The succession of different robot foes, and eventually the Red Skull meant that towards the end of the novel I started to find myself becoming a little tired of the action scenes and just wanted to skip over them. This isn't the best thing when writing action stories. However, this doesn't ruin the story in any way. yes, it means that there are duller moments every now and then, but the core story was so engaging that I was able to forgive these dips in my engagement. Seeing Captain America stuck within isolation was such an interesting take on the character, especially when he was faced with the possibility of having to go into cryogenic suspension in order to stop the virus. We get to see the internal struggle he has with this idea, of having to be frozen once again and potentially lose everything and everyone he knows and loves a second time. Captain America lost out on having his life once already, of seeing family and friends, the woman he loved. He missed out on settling down and having a life with Peggy Carter because of becoming frozen, and it still haunts him. Seeing him knowing that he will have to go through that all over again, but volunteering to do so to save other lives shows how admirable and good a character he is. This is one of the benefits of telling this kind of story in prose form over a regular comic, as we're allowed to have these scenes of personal introspection and deeper conversations as the writer isn't trying to write to a pre-set comic issue page length. It also means that some of the side characters get more of a spotlight too. Doctor Nia N'Tomo is one of these characters, a disease specialist who is working to cure Cap. We get to see a very real and somewhat sweet relationship develop between her and Cap across the novel, and I was often finding myself wanting to see more of the two of them together in scenes. The standout character of the book, however, was doctor Winston Kade. A much older and more seasoned disease specialist than N'Tomo, he;s the man who first discovers the virus inside Cap and predicts that it's possible for it to destroy the human race. Initially just seeming to be a bit of a brash and grumpy man there turns out to be a lot more layers to the character than initially expected, and the more I learnt about him and his past over the course of the book the more I found him to be fascinating. He's a character that definitely sits within the grey between good and bad, who has only the noblest of intentions but will go to extremes to meet them, his arc was by far my favourite part of the story. Captain America: Dark Designs is an interesting Captain America story, one that I don't think would have worked as well in comic form as it does here. The longer time with the characters and their inner minds were a highlight, and helped to keep me interested between the action sc

  12. 5 out of 5

    Neil

    Thots while reading: It's kinda funny, but chapter six involves a giant robot [one of the Reich's Sleepers] being activated by the Red Skull and set to attacking Paris. Four teams of SHIELD agents are being sent in to deal with it and Captain America is (view spoiler)[being kept in his quarantined cell (hide spoiler)] to act as an 'armchair general.' (view spoiler)[It kind of begs the question [since Rogers indirectly compared himself to Deadpool and Wolverine] why none of the European superhero Thots while reading: It's kinda funny, but chapter six involves a giant robot [one of the Reich's Sleepers] being activated by the Red Skull and set to attacking Paris. Four teams of SHIELD agents are being sent in to deal with it and Captain America is (view spoiler)[being kept in his quarantined cell (hide spoiler)] to act as an 'armchair general.' (view spoiler)[It kind of begs the question [since Rogers indirectly compared himself to Deadpool and Wolverine] why none of the European superhero teams responded to the danger. You have Excalibur in England, as well as some French team of heroes that was introduced in the Fantastic Four. There are even former members of the Invaders based in England who tend to ally with Captain America when he is in England. Why is it only Captain America can deal with this threat? Why not the Avengers or the Fantastic Four? Or even the X-Men? It seems funny that there's a giant killer robot running amok in Paris and only Captain America can deal with it. (hide spoiler)] "Forty years. I'll wake up in a completely different world. Everyone I know will either be gone or nearing the end of their time. Again." (41) A powerful quote from the book(view spoiler)[; a team of scientists is discussing putting Cap back 'on ice' so they can hopefully find a cure for a virus that has remained contained and undetected inside his body 'until now.' They are hoping to find a 'cure' for the virus. Cap is considering what will happen if he is put back in cryogenic freeze for another forty years, how everyone and everything he knows will be gone. Again. Yet, he still agrees to go through with the process if that is the only way to save the world (hide spoiler)] . "Dr. Zola, I believe you've given new meaning to the term 'grammar Nazi'" (146). Hah! That was a hilarious comment by the Red Skull! Definitely one of the better lines in the book. ---------------------------------------- Okay, I stand corrected. Iron Man does come into the book [for a bit], as do the Wakandans. I could not decide if it takes place 'inbetween the movies' or at some point in the comic-universe. In the comics, Peggy had been dead for some time, yet references are made to Peggy still being alive throughout the book [including on pages 227 - 228(view spoiler)[, where he informs her he is going to go back into deep freeze in hopes a cure for this 'super-virus' can be found, and she says that at least this time she knows where he will be and not be worried that he has been lost again (hide spoiler)] ]. I do wish Thor would have made an appearance; that would have been pretty cool, having 'The Big Three' together. Or even Hawkeye and Sam Wilson. Ah, well. Also, another thing that made me think it was tied more into the movies is Tony Stark. His behavior and verbiage is more in line with the movies than with the comics. Well, maybe until recently. I have not been reading the Iron Man comics for several years, now, so it is possible Marvel has changed his behavior to be more in line with the movies as opposed to the comics. But in the comics I remember reading, he was more methodical and not so...neurotic? disjointed in his thinking? I realize the author is going for trying to present Tony as focusing on everything, which makes him seem 'unfocused', but it makes Tony seem scatter-brained as opposed to a genius. I liked how the book preserved the 'buddy-relationship' between Cap and Tony. That is one thing that I have not cared for in the comics, how their relationship was torn apart during the first 'Civil War' event, and how they made Cap say things that he never once said or indicated he thought or believed about Tony prior to the Civil War, about how Cap always thought Tony was some kind of spoiled rich kid who never had to do an honest day's work in his life, how Tony was born with a silver spoon in his mouth. This 'hatred of all things-Tony' continued with Tony being a part of the 'new Illuminati' that formed in the third volume of the New Avengers, and Cap ending up opposing Tony and even hating Tony. I hated what they did to their friendship. Considering all that Tony did to help Cap reacclimate to the 'Modern World' after being found in the ice as well as the number of times Tony had to rebuild his company from the ground up with nothing but his reputation as initial capital, it was pretty cheeky on the part of the Civil War authors to make Cap say the nasty things he said about Tony. I know their relationship was strained at times prior to Civil War [such as the "Iron Armor Wars" or when Tony led a squad of Avengers to 'kill' the Supreme Intelligence (the leader of the Kree Empire at the time of the Kree-Shi'ar War)], but they always managed to repair their friendship and work together. So, yeah, I was happy to see that relationship maintained in this book. Granted, the witty repartee was more in line with the movies as opposed to the comics. The Sleepers. I do not know how I feel about them. The Nazis were apparently able to 'hide' more 'Sleeper' robots 'around the world' than was previously realized. References are made to prior Sleepers that Cap has battled; perhaps they are from stories in the comics I have not read. That is fine with me; the four Sleeper robots in this story are a bit much, though. I do not know how I feel about them as being the 'villains' against whom Cap [and Iron Man, to a lesser extent] fought. I suppose, due to the nature and plot of the story, it makes some sort of sense, but I still am not sure how I cared for it. It is definitely a different kind of Captain America story (view spoiler)[because Captain America cannot be as active as he usually is in his stories. Because he is infected with an 'Extinction Level' virus, he has to be careful with how he acts and moves, lest he infect others and cause life on Earth to cease to exist. As a result, he tries to act through proxies until he is provided with a means to fight his battles. It was pretty cool that he has to use Wakandan technology in order to be able to fight his battles. The virus forced Cap to fight the Sleepers differently; he had to behave in ways he was not used to behaving and/or fighting, which also made the story a bit more interesting. It was not any of the 'same old, same old' stuff, as it were, that one finds in normal Captain America stories (hide spoiler)] . The book moves at a decent pace. I thought it had some interesting concepts in it (view spoiler)[such as a 'sentient' virus that had infected Captain America and later the Red Skull when Schmidt occupied the cloned body of Steve Rogers, or that this virus was an 'Extinction Level' virus capable of wiping out life on Earth, or that the 'sentient virus' so admired Captain America that it saved Cap and the rest of the human race for the next hundred years while a part of itself had infected Doctor Cade and been put into cryogenic hibernation (hide spoiler)] . There was another part of the book that I also liked(view spoiler)[: it was how each chapter was basically the thoughts of the 'sentient virus' and not quotes from famous people or other books or even comic book characters. The author is giving us the thoughts/perceptions of the 'sentient virus' at the start of each chapter, but this does not become obvious until the epilogue, when the 'sentient virus' is informing Doctor Cade of its intentions for Cade and the human race as a whole (hide spoiler)] . It was a relatively fast read for me; I did enjoy reading it. I enjoyed how Cap interacted with Nick Fury and the rest of SHIELD. That was more in line with the comics than with the movies, in my opinion, and helped set the story more in the 'comic-universe' as opposed to the Marvel Movies. That is okay with me, though. I do not mind that it was set in the comics universe and not the movies. Nick Fury has always been a source of great amusement for me, as he is portrayed as practically omniscient, yet he still manages to make mistakes or overlook things that are probably pretty obvious. I love the character; don't get me wrong. I love when he is written this way; he was also written that way for the Ultimate Universe as well. He's a great character when written properly [correctly?]. Overall, I enjoyed the book and am glad I read it. I thought at first it was going to be a weak book, but I am glad to say that I was gratefully mistaken as the book progressed. It was a good book, and I enjoyed reading it.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Dale

    A Review of the Audiobook Published in 2016 by GraphicAudio. Performed by a multiple performers. Duration: approximately 6 hours. S.H.I.E.L.D. doctors discover a dormant virus in Captain America's bloodstream while performing a newfangled ultra deep scan after an encounter with a different dangerous virus. This is not just any virus, it is an "extinction-level" virus, meaning it has the potential to wipe out the human race if it were to become an active virus. So, Captain America is placed into a con A Review of the Audiobook Published in 2016 by GraphicAudio. Performed by a multiple performers. Duration: approximately 6 hours. S.H.I.E.L.D. doctors discover a dormant virus in Captain America's bloodstream while performing a newfangled ultra deep scan after an encounter with a different dangerous virus. This is not just any virus, it is an "extinction-level" virus, meaning it has the potential to wipe out the human race if it were to become an active virus. So, Captain America is placed into a containment area so the virus won't kill off the world in case it goes active. But, giant old Nazi robots from World War II keep coming to life with Adolf Hitler's voice demanding to fight Captain America. If he doesn't show up to fight, they threaten to start killing nearby civilians. Iron Man shows up to help, but these robots are really just too much for one Avenger to handle and everyone else is busy, unreachable or just too unpredictable (you don't unleash Hulk into downtown Paris). How can Captain America fight these robots when he is supposed to be under quarantine? What's making these robots come to life after all of these years? How long has Captain America been carrying this virus and where did he pick it up? Will S.H.I.E.L.D. ... Read more at: https://dwdsreviews.blogspot.com/2018...

  14. 5 out of 5

    Daphne Papadopoulou

    First of all, and I believe this is of topmost importance as an element of a good book, the language used in the book was elaborate, never too simplified or flabby. For comic lovers, it should be an entertaining alternative as a plot. Creative when it comes to the planning and the twists of it, and the characters included in the novel are not to disappoint the reader, since they are all time classics. The rest of the existing characters are no dissonance, though; they link to the main personas s First of all, and I believe this is of topmost importance as an element of a good book, the language used in the book was elaborate, never too simplified or flabby. For comic lovers, it should be an entertaining alternative as a plot. Creative when it comes to the planning and the twists of it, and the characters included in the novel are not to disappoint the reader, since they are all time classics. The rest of the existing characters are no dissonance, though; they link to the main personas smoothly and manage to give a great result in the end. I additionally found the book painfully contemporary due to the existing virus crisis. Very good choice for anyone who loves comic books but would like an alternative way of enjoying them!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Gil T.

    So our favorite super soldier Captain America is the perfect representation of the protection our country deserves. He will do anything to make sure the country and its people are safe. What happens if he finds he's infected with an extinction level virus. If the virus infects anyone else the world will end. But Cap doesn't have time to be quarantined, the sleeper robots from Nazi Germany have awoken and will battle only Captain America or destroy anything in their path. This production from Gra So our favorite super soldier Captain America is the perfect representation of the protection our country deserves. He will do anything to make sure the country and its people are safe. What happens if he finds he's infected with an extinction level virus. If the virus infects anyone else the world will end. But Cap doesn't have time to be quarantined, the sleeper robots from Nazi Germany have awoken and will battle only Captain America or destroy anything in their path. This production from GraphicAudio brings to life the marvel universe in an audio presentation that delivers the punch that is a Movie in your Mind.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Scott Vout

    Did this one as an audio book. In fact it was an audio play. Many different voices and sound effects. My first experience with an audio book like this. Cap is my favourite super hero, so when i found a non comic book about him i had to give it a go. Overall it was all right. I found some of the background effects to be a bit distracting at times and in the battle scenes it got a bit loud that i struggled to hear the characters talking. the story itself was believable, Red Skull is the antagonist. Did this one as an audio book. In fact it was an audio play. Many different voices and sound effects. My first experience with an audio book like this. Cap is my favourite super hero, so when i found a non comic book about him i had to give it a go. Overall it was all right. I found some of the background effects to be a bit distracting at times and in the battle scenes it got a bit loud that i struggled to hear the characters talking. the story itself was believable, Red Skull is the antagonist. there was plenty of action but again sometimes too loud. all in all it was ok. I would give another one a try if i find one.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    While the fighting and the Avengers characters were fun to read about, the story is awful. Cap fighting impossible robots? Okay. One at a time? Um...sure, I guess. And each are released and the encounter is drawn out for 20+ pages while introducing side characters with backgrounds and emotional ties that you learn about only to see them killed right away just as another robot comes to life and another fight happens for another 20+ pages? Lol I'm good, thanks. While the fighting and the Avengers characters were fun to read about, the story is awful. Cap fighting impossible robots? Okay. One at a time? Um...sure, I guess. And each are released and the encounter is drawn out for 20+ pages while introducing side characters with backgrounds and emotional ties that you learn about only to see them killed right away just as another robot comes to life and another fight happens for another 20+ pages? Lol I'm good, thanks.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Steve Joyce

    I read superhero novels mainly for nostalgia purposes. (Aw, who am I kidding? I read them in an attempt to somehow reclaim my youth and youthful delights). Most of the time, they turn out to be average and that's what this one was a good 98% of the time (upper-end average to be sure). However, the killer Epilogue worked very well for me and I have to bump it up a notch. I read superhero novels mainly for nostalgia purposes. (Aw, who am I kidding? I read them in an attempt to somehow reclaim my youth and youthful delights). Most of the time, they turn out to be average and that's what this one was a good 98% of the time (upper-end average to be sure). However, the killer Epilogue worked very well for me and I have to bump it up a notch.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Melinda

    These books are great. You know what you are getting, lots of crazy action and superheros! And these are superbly narrated by the team at Graphic Audio....would listen to pretty much anything they do. Fabulous to listen to.

  20. 5 out of 5

    David

    Graphic audio version. I'd like to quote passages from it but that is a disadvantage of this format. Instead I'll just misquote what I remembered incorrectly silently in my heart and urge every fan of Captain America to treat themselves by hearing/reading it for themselves. Graphic audio version. I'd like to quote passages from it but that is a disadvantage of this format. Instead I'll just misquote what I remembered incorrectly silently in my heart and urge every fan of Captain America to treat themselves by hearing/reading it for themselves.

  21. 4 out of 5

    TONY

    good captain america adventure. i could visual the movie actors with the phrasing used. quick read please can we have more?

  22. 5 out of 5

    Eric Evans

    Really enjoyed this even though I'm not a big Captain America fan. The ending was pretty awesome though moved my review from three to four. Really enjoyed this even though I'm not a big Captain America fan. The ending was pretty awesome though moved my review from three to four.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Travis Cummins

    Ok story, never really takes off to exciting heights but hums along and at fairly entertaining pace

  24. 5 out of 5

    Runalong

    Sometimes you just need a giant robot/machine battle as this book delivered that very very well Full review https://www.runalongtheshelves.net/bl... Sometimes you just need a giant robot/machine battle as this book delivered that very very well Full review https://www.runalongtheshelves.net/bl...

  25. 5 out of 5

    Nikki

    I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. While I had a physical copy of this book, I ended up listening to it on audio and im so glad I did. While the story has a main narrator, The audio has actors for every character who do all the speech, and sound effects too! It feels very much like an old style radio play mixed with a modern day movie and it was pure fun! I was hoping to enjoy this because I do love Cap and the Marvel universe, but I have read book novelisat I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. While I had a physical copy of this book, I ended up listening to it on audio and im so glad I did. While the story has a main narrator, The audio has actors for every character who do all the speech, and sound effects too! It feels very much like an old style radio play mixed with a modern day movie and it was pure fun! I was hoping to enjoy this because I do love Cap and the Marvel universe, but I have read book novelisations before, so was wary. Luckily the format of this real held true and I found the storyline very enjoyable! Though I’m not sure reading a book about a killer virus during a pandemic was my best ever move 😂😂 It felt very true to the characters, and I really enjoyed the elements that felt more like a mystery - what’s with these attacks and how do we deal with them. I particularly liked the Wakandan expert, and how Nick Fury was frustratingly Fury-like. I feel to say too much is to spoil this, so I’ll just say if you’re considering this, I highly recommend the audiobook! 3.5 stars.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Swords & Spectres

    I received a copy of ‘Dark Designs’ from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am guilty of never having been aware that Marvel did novels other than the graphic variety so, as you can imagine, when one of my favourite Marvel heroes (Captain America) had a novelisation and it was offered my way I said yes without hesitation. That’s not to say I went in expecting a world-beater. I was a bit hesitant; thinking that comic books were the perfect medium for the kind of story told but, to my I received a copy of ‘Dark Designs’ from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I am guilty of never having been aware that Marvel did novels other than the graphic variety so, as you can imagine, when one of my favourite Marvel heroes (Captain America) had a novelisation and it was offered my way I said yes without hesitation. That’s not to say I went in expecting a world-beater. I was a bit hesitant; thinking that comic books were the perfect medium for the kind of story told but, to my surprise, the novel was very good! The writing was far more intelligent than I expected for a comic book turned novel (I know, I know, never pre-judge … but it’s hard not to). The author showed an in-depth knowledge of the weaponry being used, the technology and the entire world around him. If anything, it read more like a very good thriller with superheroes instead of spies/archaeologists/pencil-pusher-turned crime fighter. Considering most characters can do nearly anything and are so cringingly perfect in thrillers (Jack Reacher etc …) it wasn’t hard to accept a character that was a genuine superhero as the main character. But anyway, back to the novel. The overall plot is that Captain America was infected by a virus (way back in the forties when he went into the ice) that has been laying dormant for over 60 years. Only now, with the super-calibrated scanners that S.H.I.E.L.D have at their disposal was the minute organism noticed. So, as you can imagine, the C.D.C and several virus specialists were quite keen on Cap being but into quarantine. I mean, who wants an Extinction Level virus just walking around being exhaled into the good clean air we all breathe? Dark Designs is very much a tale of two patients, however. The Red Skull, Captain America’s arch-enemy, who exists in a cloned body of Steve Rogers (Captain America), also has the virus and, unfortunately for him, it’s not dormant like in Cap’s body. His ever-looming date with death at the hands of virus prompts the Skull to set into motion a plan that will see him end Captain America once and for all. What better way could there be to go out? On what higher note could he leave the game than by removing the only piece from the board he ever truly wanted gone? At times, I did feel the plot was too linear. It was obvious what was coming next throughout. It became another ‘not another one of those, I can see another one of those is about to pop up’ things. But, thankfully, each of those points are written in an intelligent-enough way that it doesn’t really feel like the hard slog I expected it to. So that turned a potentially boring, laborious read into an enjoyable fast one. My only real complaints were that Steve Rogers seemed far more intent on flirting with a Wakandan doctor than most anything else. Most of his thoughts whenever she was around centred on asking her out. It just kind of made him come off as a over-excited college kid than anything else. The other main gripe was the Red Skull. Whenever he had a chapter it felt like one massive info dump. Even though his confidant was a highly intelligent scientist, he felt the need to explain every small detail about everything to him. It got very frustrating and just made me yearn for a non-Skull chapter. Overall, though, Dark Designs was an excellent read and I look forward to dipping my toe into the Superhero novels pond in the future. Considering this was number ten (I think) in the Marvel series, it’s an easy place to pick up as there doesn’t appear to be any prior knowledge needed.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jonathan

    Captain America: Dark Designs is an example of the challenge it can be to turn visual storytelling into prose. The story entangles Captain America, S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and doctors, Nick Fury, and eventually Iron Man into a fight for humanity when a deadly virus is discovered, capable of killing everyone. The story is action-heavy, mostly likely a result of having to fit many panels of acrobatics, giant robots, and assorted weaponry into words. So much of the book describes the actions taking plac Captain America: Dark Designs is an example of the challenge it can be to turn visual storytelling into prose. The story entangles Captain America, S.H.I.E.L.D. agents and doctors, Nick Fury, and eventually Iron Man into a fight for humanity when a deadly virus is discovered, capable of killing everyone. The story is action-heavy, mostly likely a result of having to fit many panels of acrobatics, giant robots, and assorted weaponry into words. So much of the book describes the actions taking place, that cheesy comic book dialog is noticeable. The worst part of this book is the ending. Details regarding the origin of the virus are shared and put into a bigger context than the story itself. The story has a lot of sci-fi tropes, witty banter, and a sense of urgency I never really buy into. Captain America would never die from a virus. That type of event would be saved for a big villain to claim their glory.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Jimena

    The book was really entertaining. It was fun reading about Captain America (Steve Rogers ) reading about different characters and having more of Fury. I think this book is great for very young kids . It’s an easy read and very fast paced. I would love to read more about this author . Kids would have fun. You get more snarky Tony stark. I mean who doesn’t love a snarky stark!😂

  29. 4 out of 5

    Vin

    This was good.....but i really didn't think the ending was as good as it could have been. it was really predictable. This was good.....but i really didn't think the ending was as good as it could have been. it was really predictable.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Matthew

    It was what I expected - an easy, if flawed, beach read. It's basically about superheroes getting COVID-19 but was released months before the pandemic? Very eerie. Kinda surreal. It was what I expected - an easy, if flawed, beach read. It's basically about superheroes getting COVID-19 but was released months before the pandemic? Very eerie. Kinda surreal.

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