06 January, 2017

#BookReview :: Black Widow: Forever Red (Black Widow #1) by Margaret Stohl

Natasha Romanoff is one of the world’s most lethal assassins. Trained from a young age in the arts of death and deception, Natasha was given the title of Black Widow by Ivan Somodorov, her brutal teacher at the Red Room, Moscow’s infamous academy for operatives.

Ava Orlova is just trying to fit in as an average Brooklyn teenager, but her life has been anything but average.The daughter of a missing Russian quantum physicist, Ava was once subjected to a series of ruthless military experiments—until she was rescued by Black Widow and placed under S.H.I.E.L.D. protection. Ava has always longed to reconnect with her mysterious savior, but Black Widow isn’t really the big sister type.

Until now.

When children all over Eastern Europe begin to go missing, and rumors of smuggled Red Room tech light up the dark net, Natasha suspects her old teacher has returned—and that Ava Orlova might be the only one who can stop him. To defeat the madman who threatens their future, Natasha and Ava must unravel their pasts. Only then will they discover the truth about the dark-eyed boy with an hourglass tattoo who haunts Ava’s dreams…

Black Widow is one of my favourite characters. It is a shame that she doesn’t get her own spotlight moments in the Avenger series. Marvel keeps making and remaking the same superhero movies till they start looking like spoof of their original avatars (have you seen the latest Spiderman trailer?) yet they won’t give Black Widow her own movie! How is that even fair? Anyway, needless to say that when I discovered that the Black Widow is getting her own book series, I managed to get my hands on Forever Red as soon as I could and delved into the pages for a kickass journey!

Ava Orlova is trying to live the life of a normal teenager, but there is nothing normal about her. Her life has been a whirlwind that brought her close to S.H.I.E.L.D, the Red Room and the Black Widow. Ava feels abandoned because she was once saved by the Black Widow only to have her move on to her next assignment while Ava was the one who was left behind. But their paths cross again when a common enemy returns from the dead. As they work towards unraveling their pasts to look for ways to bring down their nemesis, secrets are uncovered and questions are answered. But will the duo manage to bring down the notorious teacher of the Red Room?

We see a lot of Marvel universe in this book. However, my favourite part in the book is that of the character of Black Widow. Her strength and cold nature is shown in a way that the Marvel Movies failed to capture. At the same time, her more humane side is also uncovered as we discover her past. In this book she is almost the kickass character that I remember reading about when I was much younger. Ava is also a strong character who I slowly warmed up to.  The plot has a sense of underlying mystery that leads up to a big twist. There is mystery, action and drama to keep the readers involved. It is certainly a page turner from the word go!

This being my first Black Widow Novel, I was expecting a bit more of action and mind games. Don’t get me wrong, there is enough in the book, but after craving for more of this character, my expectations were just that high! The bottom line is that I loved reading this book and I am looking forward to more… This series joins my auto-buy list.

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