In a world where superpowers have corrupted the gifted, one boy will take on the most powerful of them all to avenge his father. Steelheart follows David Charleston, a teenage orphan whose father was murdered in front of him, as he seeks revenge on the murderer.
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The problem is, the murderer has superpowers. David lives in a world where some normal people were given amazing powers by an explosion in the sky. These super humans, known as Epics, all have a variety of powers. These powers corrupt the Epics and soon they have divided the world into territories ruled by a single dictator.
While most are ready to submit, there are those who fight back. While the Epics have been given great power, they have also been given secret weaknesses that allow them to be killed. David has a plan to join the Reckoners and take revenge on Steelheart, the most powerful Epic in the known world.
David impresses the Reckoners by helping them kill a weaker Epic in Steelheart's territory. They aren't willing to let him join until he reveals that he has seen Steelheart bleed and can help them find his weakness. The group agrees to work with David and formulate a plan to rid the world of Steelheart once and for all.
The plan includes convincing Steelheart that a new, powerful Epic has come to his territory to challenge him. Using technology to mimic superpowers, the Reckoners begin attacking his territory, systematically removing the sources of electricity and the leader of Steelheart's police forces.
Eventually, the Reckoners are able to draw Steelheart to a football stadium, where a battle ensues between his forces and the Reckoners. David engages Steelheart and finally deduces his weakness, allowing David to avenge his father's death. When the battle is over, David realizes his fight for revenge has become something more. He and the Reckoners will continue to fight the Epics for the benefit of mankind.
Best part of story, including ending:
I really liked this story because of the character David and his struggle to grow. David has thought only of revenge for so long. But the more he sees through the story, the more he realizes that he can't continue seeking revenge. The growth he shows, becoming a selfless hero instead of an angry teenager, is exactly what the superhero genre is all about.
Best scene in story:
David has heard that the Reckoners are in town to eliminate a lesser Epic, so he takes it upon himself to help them. Never stopping to think they may have a plan, David bulls his way into the action and nearly allows the Epic to escape. David is humbled by how much he has to learn when he watches the Reckoners' plan evolve and manage to eliminate the escaping Epic.
Opinion about the main character:
David is a genuinely funny character. One of his best traits is that he is terrible at metaphors. This doesn't stop him from trying. This trait misleads you into thinking he is incompetent, making it all the more satisfying when his intellect is revealed.