Meet Miles Morales, Spider-Man in This Compelling New YA Novel

Marvel Comics and Disney Press make a super-powered YA team-up, bringing young (and not-so-young) readers amazing tales of some of our favorite superheroes. Squirrel Girl and Black Widow have both starred in their own novels for young readers, and now it’s Miles Morales’ turn in the spotlight.

Miles Morales: Spider-Man is a novel for ages 12 and up from Jason Reynolds that masterfully introduces us to the character without having to go through an origin story first. If you or the kids have never met Miles before, this book is an amazing way to do so, introducing him so naturally as Spider-Man that you’ll never find yourself missing Peter Parker.

Miles’ superhero origin story, which is only referred to and not recounted in the book, is similar to Peter’s, but is all his own. Miles also has a power that Peter doesn’t, of near-invisible camouflage, which comes in handy when he’s heading out to do his Spidey business.

His focus in this book is more on school life than patrolling the streets as a masked hero at night, which young readers can identify with when it feels like the pressure of school is far heavier than anything else going on in the world. But when his Spider-Sense keeps going off with no clear threats apparent, Miles worries that his powers are on the fritz and his status as a hero is questionable.

Although his parents are supportive, and his father is even aware of his alter ego, Miles also struggles with his family life and his future. These are relatable concerns for just about anyone, and it’s refreshing to see the book focus on those aspects of a teen’s life rather than a menacing supervillain or battle for the fate of the planet. (Although there is, of course, a villain at work.)

All of this combines to create a novel that’s compelling and relatable, even with superpowers, and it makes Miles into a character that readers will want to know even more about. If this is your first exposure to Miles Morales, like it was for me, you’ll likely find yourself on the hunt for Ultimate Universe Spider-Man comic books to spend even more time with him.

Miles Morales: Spider-Man is now available at a retail price of $17.99.

GeekMom received a promotional copy for review purposes.

Photo: Kelly Knox, Book Cover © Disney / Marvel

Kelly Knox is a freelance writer in Seattle, WA, where she contributes to local parenting magazines. She also writes for StarWars.com, Geek & Sundry, and more. You can find crafts and art projects for geeky families at her blog The St{art} Button.