Janitor-by-night Dave Johnson, although married for thirteen years and the father of two preteen boys, has never outgrown comic books and superheroes. His wife, Naomi, is about at her wits’ end. To her it doesn’t seem too much to ask that he begin to grow up.
Growing up isn’t Dave’s destiny, however. As cleaning staff for a remote FBI facility in Washington state, he comes across an object his superiors deem a terrorist weapon. When over-imaginative Dave sneaks a closer look, he realizes the item is an alien artifact that can make him a superhero. He calls himself Powerhouse and with no wisdom to match his newfound strength, begins to right the wrongs as he sees them. Not enough crimes are committed in his small town to keep him occupied so he quickly branches out to nearby Seattle, where he has run-ins with the mob and meets a preacher who tells him that even superheroes aren’t good enough for heaven unless they repent of their sin.
Daveâ€™s adventures grow in proportion as he joins other superheroes to fight terrorists and aliens, all the while oblivious to the declining state of his marriage. What will it take for Dave to think to use his superpowers to become a better husband, father, and provider?
Tales of the Dim Knight (because he’s not bright enough to be a dark knight) is likely to appeal to those with a fondness for slapstick, anecdotal humor, and one-liners, although the subject matter does darken somewhat as the plot thickens. In the first third or more of the book, in particular, Daveâ€™s adventures are quite at random with little escalation. Folks who were cartoon-addicts as kids may appreciate the short vignettes more than I did. However, the story did gain traction after awhile and find its way to a satisfying conclusion.
Adam and Andrea Graham live with their cat inÂ Boise,Â Idaho. They are members of several writers groups, includingÂ Lost Genre Guild and American Christian Fiction Writers. Adam is a regular political columnist forÂ Pajamas Media and hosts several podcasts. His short stories appearÂ in various anthologies and e-zines. Andrea edits all of Adam’s work. A short story of hers has appeared in an anthology. Learn more about the process and publication of the book here.
A digital copy was sent to me from the publisher, Splashdown Books, for review. Opinions, as always, are mine alone.