Double Lives (Johnny Wagner, Godlike PI Book One)

Double Lives (Johnny Wagner, Godlike PI Book One) - Matt Cowper Johnny Wagner is an ex-hero, current private detective scraping the bottom of BootHeel in Z City. When an upper class superhero is taken down by one of the least threatening villains, it looks to be a cut and dry case, but the superhero's widow isn't convinced. She hires Johnny, and his crazy talking god arm to find out the truth. Now Johnny has superheroes, supervillains, and Z City's lead prosecutor breathing down his neck. He'll have to fend everyone off and find out the truth before they can bury Johnny and his case.

This was more like 4.5 stars. I found it a little hard to get behind Johnny and his bellowing god arm at first, feeling Johnny was a bit arrogant (he's not indestructible, but is egging on some guys with guns?). But as the story progresses, we got a little deeper into his character and it was nice to see something a little more from him than just ribbing and bravado.

About the same time the case started taking on some more revelations and twists, that made everything interesting, and even the god arm added a new shade to his character.

I loved the cityscape the author imagined. Full of good sections and bad sections, good guys and bad guys, and enough corruption to keep everyone on their toes. There was a bit of good and bad in nearly everything the author touched, which made everything seem that much more realistic, even with superhumans, superheroes/villains, and the occasional direct link to the Net.

The story, pacing, dialog, and character development were all quite well done, and the editing was spot on. If you like your superheroes flawed, your city mixed, your world futuristic, and your characters a bit salty, you'll love Double Lives.