Review: The Extraordinaries by TJ Klune // Or, Not Your Ordinary Superhero Story

★★★☆ | This one’s for when you want to HAVE FUN!!

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Title: The Extraordinaries

Series: The Extraordinaries, #1

Author: TJ Klune

Publisher: Tor Teen

Release Date: July 14th, 2020

Pages: 405

Genres:  Fantasy | Sci-fi | YA | LGBT


🦸‍♂️ m/m friends to lovers
🦸‍♂️ side established f/f
🦸‍♂️ not your ordinary superhero story
🦸‍♂️ ADHD rep

Some people are extraordinary. Some are just extra. TJ Klune’s YA debut, The Extraordinaries, is a queer coming-of-age story about a fanboy with ADHD and the heroes he loves.

Nick Bell? Not extraordinary. But being the most popular fanfiction writer in the Extraordinaries fandom is a superpower, right?

After a chance encounter with Shadow Star, Nova City’s mightiest hero (and Nick’s biggest crush), Nick sets out to make himself extraordinary. And he’ll do it with or without the reluctant help of Seth Gray, Nick’s best friend (and maybe the love of his life).

Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl meets Marissa Meyer’s Renegades in TJ Klune’s YA debut.


ALC/ARC received from All opinions are my own.

If you like stories that manage not to take themselves too seriously and perhaps go a bit meta then this one is for you.

Here, we have a superhero story but from the POV of the superhero’s disaster love interest.

Nick Bell is a huge fanboy, an author of the longest fanfiction in the Extraordinaries fandom, that boy with ADHD. What Nick Bell isn’t is Extraordinary.

And he desperately wants to be after an encounter with the city’s superhero Shadow Star A.K.A. Nick’s biggest crush.

And thus begin the trial and errors of Nick trying to become an Extraordinary. With the help of his best friend (and maybe the love of his life?) Seth and two amazing lesbian girlfriends and part of their friend group he desperately attempts one after another dumb (and often dangerous) plan to gain superpowers.

This book is ridiculous and camp and not to be taken seriously.

But it also breaks the tropes, is surprising even when you think you have it all figured out, and has a great rep.

ADHD is a huge part of the story and Nick’s characterisation. It’s not just something mentioned in passing — it’s here from the first page to the last one.

And the whole group of queer misfits that are Nick’s friends is already out. Nick’s gay, Seth is bi, and Nick’s two girl friends are GIRLFRIENDS and lesbians.

Nick and Seth were so cute, too! Nick was super oblivious to Seth’s feelings for a big part and Seth was pinning HARD (while beta reading the self insert fanfiction Nick wrote, poor boy…) and it was both heartbreaking and hilarious!

The one thing I didn’t like was the overt cop propaganda & police idealisation — Nick’s father is a cop and it is a big part of the story. With what’s going on in the USA and police brutality this doesn’t read well and I hope Klune will try and improve in the rest of the series.


  • Have you read The Extraordinaries? Are you planning to?


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