Sunday, September 2, 2012

Book #49

The Law of Superheroes, by James Daily & Ryan Davidson. Paperback.

Would the 2nd Amendment apply to Cyclops' eye blasts? Does Superman need to pay income taxes on diamonds he squeezes from coal? Could Doomsday be charged with murdering Superman, even after the Man of Steel came back from the dead? With the exception of the characters in the Pixar movie The Incredibles, very few superheroes have faced these questions.
A pair of lawyers from the Midwest have decided to ask these questions in this engaging book. Legal tomes are not known for being readable and accessible, but this one manages to be.  I am not a lawyer, but I understood almost everything the authors were talking about. The Law of Superheroes covers a range of basic legal issues, such as the US Constitution, evidence, contracts, and administrative law. The authors' focus is on the US courts and legal system, although many of the concepts are applicable in courtrooms around the world.

By using examples from published actual comic book plots, and from "hypothetical" cases involving heroes and their situations, Daily and Davidson bring comic readers into the process of legal analysis. They cite actual cases as precedents, using how courts have actually ruled in "real-world" cases to hypothesize how they might rule in "superpowered" cases. At least, they explain the thought processes that lawyers and judges would engage in, as they weighed this type of situation.
This book is scheduled for an October release. Anyone interested in either the law or superheroes (or both) should consider picking it up.

Note: I received this book for review, free of charge, via the LibraryThing Early Reviewer program.

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