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Philip Wylie

Book Overview: 

Gladiator by Philip Wylie is the story of a man who although normal in all other ways, through the genius of his Father a biologist attains the strength and impregnability of a superman. The problems he encounters in trying to fit into a society of normal human beings who show fear and hatred whenever they view his abnormal strength and physical ability pains him to the point of having to leave civilization.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .I've read some. We're born like—well—like the kittens were born last year."

"That's right." Banner knitted his brow. He began to explain the details of conception as it occurs in man—the biology of ova and spermatazoa, the differences between the anatomy of the sexes, and the reasons for those differences. He drew, first, a botanical analogy. Hugo listened intently. "I knew most of that. I've seen—girls."


"Some of them—after school—let you."

Danner was surprised, and at the same time he was amused. He had forgotten the details of his young investigation. They are blotted out of the minds of most adults—to the great advantage of dignity. He did not show his amusement or his surprise.

"Girls like that," he answered, "aren't very nice. They haven't much modesty. It's rather indecent, because sex is a personal thing and something you ought to keep for the one you're very fond of. Y. . . Read More

Community Reviews

In a recent review here on Goodreads, for J.D. Beresford's seminal 1911 classic "The Wonder," I mentioned that the novel was an early example of one of Radium Age sci-fi's favorite themes, that of the "superman" or "wunderkind." In that book, we had encountered a young British lad, Victor Stott, who

An interesting story filled with realistic but unlikable characters doing mostly mundane things. While the story was interesting the story didn’t really flow mostly because each chapter felt almost like a separate short story like this was originally serialized even though that doesn’t seem to

This is a SF novel that can be viewed as one of the progenitors of Superman. Originally published in 1930 it contains some ideas that later became a trope of Superhero genre.

The story start with a scientist, Abednego Danner, who was a professor of biology in a small college in the town of Indian Cre

What a find! This book, written in 1930, is the 'mother' of the superhero genre. It's also far more than the pulp adventure it may appear, with a well-thought out and prescient plot that sees the protagonist struggling to come to terms with his superpowers. Raced through it and thoroughly enjoyed it

In which all the new-fangled emotional and psychological complexity claimed for modern superhero movies is found to have been there from the start

"When you were little more than a mass of plasm inside your mother, I put a medicine in her blood that I had discovered. I did it with a hypodermic needl

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