Captain Marvel: Liberation Run is the feminist novel that will inspire the hero in you


Captain Marvel: Liberation Run by Tess Sharpe is what Captain Marvel’s all about. This is without a doubt a feminist novel bound to lift women up and inspire them to be great.

You can find Captain Marvel just about anywhere nowadays: comic books, movies, videos games, and more. And if you love that Captain Marvel is not only one of Marvel’s standout female superheroes but also lends herself to feminist causes, then Captain Marvel: Liberation Run will be right up your alley.

The Titan Books novel by Tess Sharpe is great on many fronts for superhero enthusiasts (or just anyone who enjoys a good story about overcoming adversities). The story follows a young woman, Rhi, who seeks out Captain Marvel’s help. Rhi is an Inhuman living on a planet where Inhuman women are stripped of their powers and taught to be subservient to men.

It’s a mix of Marvel-meets-Handmaid’s Tale, and the similarity is not lost in the novel itself. At one point, Scott Lang actually points out that the planet’s affliction is much like the Margaret Atwood novel. And with that said, Captain Marvel isn’t the only hero who comes on this “liberation run.” Alongside Carol Danvers and Scott Lang (Ant-Man) are Amadeus Cho (Brawn), Mantis, and a surprise hero that avid Marvel fans will be surprised to see.

The heroes’ cameos aren’t the only things that make this novel a read that goes from good to great. At the heart of this story is the struggle for a woman to realize her self-worth. And really, it’s not just one woman, but an entire planet of women. On the planet where Rhi resides, Inhuman women are taught not to use their powers because they’re told they can’t handle them. Women are also told a folklore tale about Captain Marvel as a lesson — but in their twisted tale, Captain Marvel goes mad from being burdened with her abilities and chooses death over her having her powers.

This specific warning to young women might be a special circumstance on this fictional planet, but the meaning of this message is one we hear all time in real life. Women have been told they have no rights, women have been taught to stay quiet and subservient to men, and women are held back from being their most powerful. Women have even been told that loving another woman romantically is wrong (something that Rhi learns to be comfortable with as well).

Even if the circumstances for women have gotten better over the years, there are still moments when women face self-doubt. And though Liberation Run isn’t a certified self-help novel, it will definitely help to inspire the reader to know their own self-worth.

Rhi looks up to Carol, who is strong both physically and emotionally. It’s a journey for Rhi to rediscover that she is worthy of her abilities, and the pep talks from Carol, Mantis and others will even inspire the reader to feel heroic in their own way.

At the end of this novel, readers will come away with the knowledge they are as powerful as Captain Marvel. We may not be able to fly or go full Binary, but we each have qualities that make us unique. It may be a skill you have, how much you know, or how helpful you are.

I will admit that the feminist moments in this novel are very much in your face and maybe a little cliché at times (including a part where Carol saves a woman from a creepy dude at the bar). But hey, what other superhero novels are addressing these themes in such a critical way?

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This might be an enjoyable read for anyone who likes superheroes and their stories, but maybe aren’t so much into reading comic books (like myself). You’ll definitely want to pick Captain Marvel: Liberation Run up to continue celebrating Captain Marvel and all the powerful women you know in real life.