Black Jesus and Other Superheroes


168 pages

English language

Published Feb. 9, 2017 by University of Nebraska Press.

Copied ISBN!

View on OpenLibrary

3 stars (1 review)

Black Jesus and Other Superheroes chronicles ordinary people achieving vivid extrasensory perception while under extreme pain. The stories tumble into a universe of the jaded and the hopeful, in which men and women burdened with unwieldy and undesirable superhuman abilities are nonetheless resilient in subtle and startling ways.

Venita Blackburn's characters hurl themselves toward the inevitable fates they might rather wish away. Their stories play with magic without the sparkle, glaring at the internal machinations of the human spirit. Fragile symbols for things such as race, sexuality, and love are lifted, decorated, and exposed to scrutiny and awe like so many ruins of our imagination. Through it all Blackburn’s characters stumble along currents of language both thoughtful and hilarious.

1 edition

Not as good as I’d hoped

3 stars

A collection of short stories, with an emphasis on short. Many 2 page stories that felt more like an idea for a short story, or a scene from a full story. Perhaps a stylistic choice to go along with the “peek in my on someones life” theme of these stories, but it just felt jarring to me. The author also goes heavy on literary stylistics, using unusual and surprising metaphors and descriptions, which I found distracting and confusing. That said, I really enjoyed he last two stories in this collection which are longer and more fleshed out, where the author’s style is spread out around exposition that helps ground the characters, enriching them to be more than mere vehicles for ideas.


  • Fiction, short stories (single author)