Bestselling author John Scalzi has become one of the most popular authors today, known for fun and page-turning works of speculative fiction that have gained him fans far beyond the genre. He continues to build up accolades — recently his 2022 New York Times bestseller The Kaiju Preservation Society won the Locus Award for Best Novel and the Ohioana Readers Choice Award, and is a finalist for this year’s Hugo Award. In September, he’ll embark on a national tour, and then he will be the Guest of Honor at the 2023 Budapest International Book Festival, a first time for a science fiction author. In addition, there are a number of both big and small screen adaptations in the works for his books.
Now, Scalzi returns with another memorable and unique caper set in the strangest of all worlds… present-day Earth. Starter Villain is a fast-paced, comedic adventure that asks the question: How does a super villain learn… to be a villain?
Inheriting your mysterious uncle’s supervillain business is more complicated than you might imagine. Sure, there are the things you’d expect. The 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: the sentient, language-using, computer-savvy cats. And the fact that in the overall organization, they’re management…
Join John Scalzi on a hilarious tour through the ins-and-outs of a corporation that just happens to be plotting world domination. A blend of the best of villainy from James Bond and Marvel, mixed with a touch of The Office and What We Do in the Shadows, Starter Villain is the perfect escape read this fall for fans of thrillers, science fiction, and of course, cats… or anyone who has ever imagined what it might take to become the ultimate evil mastermind.
“Scalzi again examines tropes in a tale of an ordinary individual being cast into an extraordinary situation with his trademark quick pacing, clever banter, and ability to find humor in desperate situations…. Scalzi’s latest will appeal to his legion of fans and draw in new ones.” — Booklist, Starred Review
“[T]his story of snark with a heart reminds readers that the logical conclusion of ‘dogs have owners, cats have staff’ is that cats are management and never let anyone forget it. VERDICT: Readers of humorous fantasy are sure to love Scalzi’s latest as much as those cats; it’s also for those who enjoy seeing superhero stories folded, twisted, and mutilated and anyone wishing for a righteous villain lair surrounded by intelligent sharks. Highly recommended.” — Library Journal, Starred Review
“In this clever, fast-paced thriller, Hugo Award winner Scalzi subverts classic supervillain tropes with equal measures of tongue-in-cheek humor and common sense… The result is a breezy and highly entertaining genre send-up.” — Publishers Weekly
John Scalzi writes books, which, considering where you’re reading this, makes perfect sense. He’s best known for writing science fiction, including the New York Times bestseller “Redshirts,” which won the Hugo Award for Best Novel. He also writes non-fiction, on subjects ranging from personal finance to astronomy to film, was the Creative Consultant for the Stargate: Universe television series. He enjoys pie, as should all right thinking people. You can get to his blog by typing the word “Whatever” into Google. No, seriously, try it.