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The Last Days of Krypton

3.75  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,434 Ratings  ·  220 Reviews
Finally, the epic tale that has never been told: the tragic story of the destruction of Superman's home planet.

Everyone knows how Kal-El—Superman—was sent to Earth before his planet exploded. Now Kevin J. Anderson unfolds the riveting backstory of this iconic superhero. The Last Days of Krypton is a sweeping tale of the politics and betrayals that blinded both heroes and
Audio CD, 0 pages
Published October 15th 2007 by Tantor Media (first published 2007)
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(showing 1-30 of 2,786)
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Best prose novel about Superman's universe that I've read so far!


I did a big bet on this novel since I didn't wait even to know much about reviews of it or even waiting for the softcover and I ordered right away the first printing hardcover edition when the novel just came out (back then in 2008).

I don't know, for some reason I had faith that the book would be a good one...

...and the faith paid off.

Since it actually was a very good book.

I had very good memo
Apr 13, 2009 Brad rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fantasy
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Michael Kucharski
May 18, 2008 Michael Kucharski rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Possibly the most disappointing book I have read this year (2007). It disappoints on so many levels and in so many ways. For starters, with over sixty books to his credit, I was expecting something better; granted with half of those books based on the work of others (George Lucas, Frank Herbert, A, E, Vogt, and others) so perhaps it is not unexpected that this book disappoints. Much like today’s comicbook writers, either because of a lack of their own creativity or because of corporate demands, ...more
Nov 01, 2011 Nat rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Finally, after three years I was able to read this book over the course of a short road trip. It's an enjoyable read, but this book fell just short of being epic. We know the planet blows up, right? Good, not too many spoilers follow...

I'll list my gripes first:

Jor-El: He is supposed to be the most brilliant man on all of Krypton but this is sacrificed at the altar of "science must come first" at any cost and also at the altar of common sense. He could tell you how much water a glass can hold, b
Apr 10, 2013 Peter rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: no one
GoodReads/Amazon management is censoring reviews from the sight of their "community". Criticism of the acquisition of GoodReads by Amazon results in the summary disappearance of the review from the book listing, without informing the reviewer. The complete version of this review has therefore been moved to the following sites:

If you, like
Jul 07, 2013 Meghan rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-favorites
This is one of those books that I could read again and again - and have, actually, haha. It was first purchased in a small bookstore at the airport several years ago and it was read within the first half of my flight.

I loved seeing what led up to Superman/Clark Kent being sent here to Earth. What a story? It even catches you up on some of the bad guys from the movie. Superman fans, THIS is a MUST READ.

Ok, I promised that I would come back later and add to this review. I should start out by sayin
I haven't actually read any of the Superman comics, so I have no beef with this book's details and it seems to mesh well with what I remember from all the films and tv series. So, it had some interesting information and served as a pretty good summary of the backgrounds of Zod, Jor-El, etc.
Having said that, though, I agree that this book seems to have been written for the average 8th grader. (Unfortunately, more of what I have come to expect from Kevin Anderson novels.) Extremely light character
Aug 22, 2011 Nicholas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An exciting and (considering how often the story has been told and re-told) surprisingly fresh insight into the back-story of one of the most iconic fictional figures of the last century. Anderson has united elements of many of the various back-stories behind Krypton, but in doing so has put a wholly new spin on the destruction of Krypton. The story is elegantly put together, The characters are well developed, and yet still very comprehensible in their motivations and actions. The setting is as ...more
Jan 15, 2010 James rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sci-fi
Despite the mixed reviews, I thought Kevin J. Anderson did a good job portraying life on Krypton. I have often wondered, if Krypton were so much more advanced than Earth, why didn't they explore new worlds? Why when the planet exploded, there were no Kryptonians around except those that barely escaped? Anderson answers these and more in a thick book about the rise and fall of Krypton.

Krypton is like Rome was in its waning days of the Empire. Fat from its long, proud history, there is little cre
Michael Fierce
Though it's got some insanely mixed reviews, I really want to read this.

When I do, it will be a hard decision to make between the 2 really cool cover editions.


Athena Braun
May 02, 2009 Athena Braun rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Superman fans
I didn't want to put this book down and it was with great reluctance when I had too!! If you ever wanted to know more about Kal-El's birthplace then this is the book for you. How did Jor-El meet Lara? Who created the Phantom Zone? The deviousness of Zod and how Nam-Ek and Aethyr became his companions. The total stupidity of the Kryptonian council and why they are to blame for the destruction of Krypton. The story of Kandor and why Brainic did what he did. Jor-El taking back Kryptonopolis from Zo ...more
Nov 11, 2008 Bybees rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Ryan: I haven't read science fiction in years, but this book caught my eye in the library. It's about Superman's home planet, in case you ever wanted to know where he came from. I did, and I had such high hopes, but this book was a thorough letdown. The dialogue was unrealistic, the characters were shallow, the storyline was weak and unbelievable. It seemed to have been written for 8th graders. If you're a Superman fan, I recommend you simply leave his homeplanet's fate to your own imagination.
Rob Ladefoged
Aug 11, 2014 Rob Ladefoged rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
I don't want to waste too much time talking about how terrible this book was. I read it because it was recommended to me by someone of whom I've recommended about a dozen books, otherwise I would have put it down about 1/3 of the way through.

Most of their characterizations were established by the book telling us that was the way they were. The book kept insisting that Jor-El was a genius who was well established in his community, but then he kept making idiotic decisions that didn't make any sen
Mar 28, 2010 Jeph rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Anyone who is even remotely interested in comic books knows the story of Superman, the sole survivor of the doomed planet Krypton, sent to Earth in the planet's final moments to seek a new beginning under our strengthening yellow sun. However, few know the true story of Krypton itself. Why was the planet destroyed? When and how? Who were Kal-El's parents, and what were they like? And just who is Zod? All these questions and more are answered in Kevin J. Anderson's The Last Days of Krypton . In ...more
I love reading stories about superheroes. And it's fun to delve into the background of Superman. What were his parents like? What transpired on Krypton before he was born?

And I enjoyed this story. One thing that I noticed was that I didn't really get into the story and care for the characters as much as I do in other books. I don't know if that has to do with Anderson's writing, or because I brought so much to the book, and kept imagining the opening scenes of the 1978 Superman film and super-i
Shannon McGee
Nov 26, 2008 Shannon McGee rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book takes place about 2 years before the birth of Superman, a.k.a. Kal-el. We follow Jor-el and Lara (Kal-el's parents); Zor-el (brother to Jor-el); and General Zod, Aethyr and Nam-Ek (the main bad guys). It tells a story about people trying to survives through great crisis. I had not really read many comicbook-based novel, so this was new to me.

The flow of the book moves smoothly through each of the chapters, which are short but have a lot of action throughout. The characters are entertai
Feb 08, 2013 Abhinav rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-read
You can find the full review over at The Founding Fields:

Shadowhawk reviews the audiobook edition of Kevin J. Anderson’s novel about the fall of Superman’s world and its final moments.

“Emotionally super-charged, this is a story that is not to be missed.” ~The Founding Fields

Up until I read Matt Forbeck’s Brave New World trilogy and Adam Christopher’s Seven Wonders last year I don’t think I’ve ever read a superhero novel. Or a comics tie-in for that matter.
Mar 25, 2011 Jeff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: any superman fans or those who just plain like sf
I really enjoyed this novel a lot more than I thought I would. I only picked it up, because this is the only book by Kevin J. Anderson that my local library has, outside of all of the Dune novels co-written with Brian Herbert. The concept and outline of this novel are put together quite well. There aren't any spots in this book that move at a slow pace.
This was so well written that I found it hard to put it down once I started! The characters were very well developed and when the end is coming,
Jan 30, 2015 Cole rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
What did I think? I thought it sucked. I might have liked it if I read this when I was 13. This is what it reminded me of: Kryptonopolis = Nazi Germany, General Zod = Hitler, the Ring of Strength = the Gestapo, Jor-El and Zor-El = Kryptonian partisan leaders. We all know how it ends.

I was kinda bothered by the cheesy Superman references: "is it a bird? is it an airship?", "truth and justice". "Kneel before Zod" was the only one that I didn't mind and kinda hoped would make an appearance.

I have n
May 27, 2014 Robbygolds rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Last Days of Krypton is a very good prequel to Superman. It shows the struggles Jor-El goes through and how it all changes him. Jor-El develops a lot from his shy, lonely, non-political scientist that he was at the beginning of the book. This book also tells the story of well known characters like Lara and Zod, as well as lesser known characters such as Zor-El and Nam-Ek. Every single important character in this story develops so well like Jor-El. This definitely explained a lot about Supe ...more
This was an interesting read. I liked finding out a little more about Krypton and Kal-El's parents and family. I think Anderson did a good job creating Kryptonian society, and tying in several things from the greater Superman universe (Argos City, General Zod and friends, Brainiac, and so on).

The only frustration I had with the book was that Anderson seemed to be writing to a midgrade or YA market with the tone of his writing. It was very disconcerting for a book not obviously marketed to those
Greg Lindsay
Jun 03, 2013 Greg Lindsay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
So I just finished The Last Days of Krypton for the first time. I put it off reading it because I've never really been a big Superman fan, more of a Captain America and Batman fan.
But now I wish I hadn't, this book was truly awesome. Very rich in detail without slowing the story. All the characters were wonderful and even right up till the end I was hoping that Jor-El would find a way to save Krypton even though I knew that was not going to happen-couldn't happen.
I'd actually LOVE to see a boo
Feb 08, 2012 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The “Last Days of Krypton” was an awesome telling of the events leading up to baby Superman’s journey to earth. I was never a diehard comic book person and only read a few here or there, so up until I read this book, I really only had glimpses of what happened to Superman’s home planet thru little bits of comic books, or movies, and even TV shows. This really gave me a whole complete picture.

The characters were portrayed loyal to what I’ve read and seen in the DC universe, identifying with them
Jan 09, 2010 Luis rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: dc-comics
Kevin J. Anderson is experienced at taking pre-existing charcters or settings (Dune, Star Wars) and producing novels that expand said universes. Here it is somewhat hit and miss since he's working with one of the most enduring mythos of modern fiction - Superman and his origin. What he added to the story, I have no problems with, it's what he changed that bothers me and many others. Mainly that he turned Jor-El (Superman's father) into an absent minded professor type who is hopelessly naive inst ...more
May 12, 2009 Prester rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
Shelves: kja
Kevin J. Anderson delivers a well written chapter of the history of Krypton as he brings the "Man of Steel's" home world to it's knees.

We've all heard the stories of how Krypton met its demise. Now Anderson has created a wonderfully chaotic vision of the tragic event in full.

I was very pleased with the characters, the settings and the end result... well, it was kind of a bummer that Krypton.. well... you know.

At any rate. I have already been telling people they need to check out this book.

As alw
Oct 13, 2013 Kirk rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a really enjoyable prequel of sorts to the Superman saga. All of the little snippets of Krypton history that I've heard over the years are assembled here together, and like a jigsaw puzzle, they all fit together in a really satisfying way. It's well-written, but really descriptive in that way that can make sci-fi and fantasy a bit laborious to read sometimes.

The only reason I'm not giving it a higher rating is because there really isn't much there with any depth; it's a comic book in n
Sep 01, 2015 Douglas rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adventure, sci-fi, fiction
Good character development and plausible plot. Fun read!
Octavia Cade
I'm a bit torn on this one. I read it because I've liked a lot of Anderson's other work, though I'm only familiar with the basics of the Superman story. Mostly it was an easy read, fun if fairly shallow and tending by necessity to disaster porn. That said, to me the most interesting character by far was the younger brother, Zor-El, and I would have preferred more on him and less on his cripplingly naive (and frequently outstandingly stupid) brother.

The thing that solidified this as a two star fo
W. Derek Atkins
Nov 24, 2014 W. Derek Atkins rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This tale really does have the quality of a Greek tragedy, because the people of Krypton literally lose everything because of their inability - no, refusal - to accept the reality of the dangers surrounding their world, or to do anything constructive to save their doomed world. Throughout this story, Jor-El, the future father of Kal-El - Superman - plays the role of a prophet, warning his people again and again that their world is doomed, only to have his warnings fall on the deaf ears of the Kr ...more
Sep 12, 2011 Jon rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: hated-it
I happened upon this book because the books I was looking for weren't on the shelves and I started perusing for something interesting. Boy was I wrong. After chapter 2 I became convinced that the book was dry and predictable. Every page I after just convinced me further. I guess its my own fault. I never liked books where the outcome is known from the start but I tried anyhow. The only thing left to tell in books where the story is known is character depth and evolution, which is poorly done.
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Pseudonyms: Gabriel Mesta, K.J. Anderson

He has written spin-off novels for Star Wars, StarCraft, Titan A.E., and The X-Files, and is the co-author of the Dune prequels. His original works include the Saga of Seven Suns series and the Nebula Award-nominated Assemblers of Infinity. He has also written several comic books including the Dark Horse Star Wars collection Tales of the Jedi written in coll
More about Kevin J. Anderson...

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