Comics Newsletter

Book Recommendations for The Justice League (And A Few That They’ve Already Read)

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Danielle Bourgon

Staff Writer

Danielle is an educator, theatre artist, and book lover from Toronto, Ontario. She acknowledges that this is the traditional territory of the Huron-Wendat, Haudenosaunee, and most recently, the territory of the Mississaugas of the New Credit where she is grateful to live and work. When she’s not drinking tea and reading on the couch, she’s recommending books to her students, friends, and family. She’s a feminist, a nerd, and a baker. Oh. And she has Hogwarts tattooed on her arm.

With the latest superhero movie on the horizon, I got to thinking about the reading life of these heroes. So here are my book recommendations for The Justice League (plus a few books that I’m sure are already on their shelves).

Wonder Woman

the-last-tudor-coverWhat She Has Read: The Last Tudor by Philippa Gregory

Given what we learned about Wonder Woman in the first movie, I feel like she’s spent a good portion of her time in the realm of mortals studying. Therefore, it stands to reason that she’s made her way through the Philippa Gregory catalogue to learn about important times in European history. It doesn’t hurt that Gregory writes from a distinctly female perspective.


men-explain-things-to-me-coverWhat She Should Read: Men Explain Things to Me by Rebecca Solnit

If Diana were my friend (oh, if wishing made it so) I would absolutely recommend this book of essays to her. As the only lead female character in the Justice League, I feel like she would sympathize with Solnit’s viewpoint on feminism. Given the success of the Wonder Woman movie and the giant step back that the Justice League film took in terms of the Amazon warriors’ costumes (for further reading check out this piece from The Golden Lasso) I would bet that the title essay will be of particular interest to Diana.



What He Has Read: The Message by Katherine Applegate

With his ability to breathe underwater and his connection with sea creatures, I feel like he would have a special connection with the popular 1990s Animorphs novel series. In The Message the main character can turn into a dolphin and she’s able to use her particular marine viewpoint to solve problems. I feel that Aquaman probably read this book and felt a kinship with Cassie as a youth.


What He Should Read: Kon-Tiki: Across the Pacific in a Raft by Thor Heyerdahl

This classic about sailing across the Pacific Ocean sounds perfect for Aquaman. After adventuring with the Justice League I think he’d enjoy the fact that this book is all about a team expedition across the sea. That, combined with the discussion of man’s relationship with the ocean, makes it an easy pick for Aquaman.



zen-and-the-art-of-motorcycle-maintenance-coverWhat He Has Read: Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance by Robert M. Pirsig

No doubt Alfred forced this one on a younger Bruce Wayne. A literary work about living life to its fullest, I would bet that Bruce read it begrudgingly. I would also bet that it had a pretty profound impact on him and that he often references it when doing business deals for Wayne Industries.


crazy-rich-asians-coverWhat He Should Read: Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan

Bruce should absolutely read this modern classic. A story about a young rich man with a secret identity sounds a little familiar doesn’t it? The opulence, the tense personal relationships, and the public spotlight that comes with large fortunes are all reasons I think he’d feel drawn to the storyline. Lastly, I feel like he could learn a thing or two from the cultural context in the novel that would add to his knowledge of the world.


ancillary-justice-coverWhat He Has Read: Ancillary Justice by Ann Leckie

The main character in this novel is an artificial intelligence from a ship inside a human body. I feel like he would be drawn to the novel’s discussion of the relationship between technology and humans. I also would bet that given his age and his connection to technology/the internet he heard all the buzz surrounding this book and read it during his college athlete days. Plus, his knowledge of weapons technology fits in well with the soldier aspect of Breq’s storyline in Ancillary Justice.

infomocracy-coverWhat He Should Read: Infomocracy by Malka Ann Older

A futuristic world wherein politics and technology are intertwined is the setting for this novel, making it a perfect fit for Cyborg. Given that he is described as a combination of the power of technology and the strength of the human heart, I believe he would love this unique look at the relationship between humanity and computer companies.


The Flash

ahsoka-coverWhat He Has Read: Ahsoka by E.K. Johnston

As the nerdy teen member of the Justice League, Barry Allen has definitely read novels from the Star Wars canon. I would bet that while he’s read all of them, but something like Ahsoka would be near the top of his list of favourites. A well-written YA novel expanding upon the story of a character from the lesser-known animated series would be right up this teen’s alley and maybe even a contender for his favourite.


What He Should Read: What I Talk About When I Talk About Running by Haruki Murakami

Even if you know nothing about The Flash, you probably know about the running aspect of his super powers. This novel is Murakami’s meditation on the impact that the sport of running has had on his fascinating life. The topic, paired with the fact that it’s written by a modern master, make it a great fit for Barry.