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Birds of Prey: Dead of Winter

by Gail Simone and Nicola Scott

Publisher: DC Comics

Format: softcover, full color, $17.99

ISBN: 978-1-4012-1641-2

Reviewed by: Library Journal

Sidelined from her beloved Batgirl persona by the Joker's bullet to her spine, paraplegic former librarian Barbara Gordon reinvents herself as all-seeing hacker-meister Oracle and teams up with Dinah "Black Canary" Lance. Simone took over the series in 2003, penning the definitive superheroine-team saga until moving to Wonder Woman. Through seven paperback collections, Simone's Birds grew to incorporate regulars Huntress, Lady Blackhawk, Big Barda, and Misfit, with numerous other DC characters dropping in and, of course, a rogue's gallery of villains. This last volume expands the team further as Katrina "Spy-Smasher" Armstrong directs them in an anti-Soviet op that leads to a battle with those not-quite-villains, the Secret Six. Simone delivers consistent appeal with the emotional resonance of the characters and the depth of their relationships as well as with clever narrative twists, catchy dialog, and plenty of action. Indeed, she makes femme-fighting grounded and believable, and Scott's art for this volume shines. Recommended for ages 16+. —Martha Cornog