Gotham High – Book Review

Gotham High

By Melissa de la Cruz

Gotham High Cover


Title: Gotham High

Author: Melissa de la Cruz

Illustrator: Thomas Pitilli

Publisher: DC Inc

Pub. Date: April 7th, 2020



From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Alex and Eliza and The Witches of East End comes a reimagining of Gotham for a new generation of readers. Before they became Batman, Catwoman, and The Joker, Bruce, Selina, and Jack were high schoolers who would do whatever it took–even destroy the ones they love–to satisfy their own motives.

After being kicked out of his boarding school, 16-year-old Bruce Wayne returns to Gotham City to find that nothing is as he left it. What once was his family home is now an empty husk, lonely but haunted by the memory of his parents’ murder. Selina Kyle, once the innocent girl next door, now rules over Gotham High School with a dangerous flair, aided by the class clown, Jack Napier.

When a kidnapping rattles the school, Bruce seeks answers as the dark and troubled knight–but is he actually the pawn? Nothing is ever as it seems, especially at Gotham High, where the parties and romances are of the highest stakes … and where everyone is a suspect.

With enchanting art by Thomas Pitilli, this new graphic novel is just as intoxicating as it is chilling, in which dearest friends turn into greatest enemies–all within the hallways of Gotham High!

Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with an ARC of Gotham High to review!



My Review: 

A well known fact about me in my family and friend group is that I adore anything involving superheroes. I’ve gone to the theatre to see every new marvel movie, I’m subscribed to DC Universe so I can watch Young Justice and read the Nightwing comics, and I will read any superhero/supervillain YA novel that comes out. Given this obsession, I was so excited when I received an ARC of Gotham High on Netgalley and started reading it right away.

Let’s get the obvious out of the way first–I absolutely adored this art style! The illustrator did such a fantastic job at capturing the mood of the novel and particular scene with his color choices, and I love how almost sketchy vibe of the character designs. It was the most enjoyable part of the novel for me since I don’t often get the chance to read graphic novels.

It’s normally very hard to capture a character that people are already acquainted with, in this case Batman, Catwoman, and Joker, but I found the younger versions of these three to be intriguing. De la Cruz definitely took some artistic liberties with some characters, most notably making Bruce Wayne half chinese, and I found that some of these changes worked and some of them didn’t. The diversity of this story, while refreshing, came off as somewhat forced. I also really didn’t like how the female characters were constantly depicted as manipulative–it just left a bad taste in my mouth.

Lastly, let’s discuss the plot, which I found to be just the right amount of cliche. I got major Riverdale vibes due to how dramatic everything was, but that made the story fun. I, along with an alarming number of people, are huge suckers for these trashy teenage tv shows and novels because, despite being totally unrealistic, they are addicting and engaging and something you’re able to enjoy without using too much brain power.

In conclusion, I give Gotham High three and a half out of five stars for being a fun, cliche novel that has some issues with representation. I recommend this novel to any younger DC fan who’s looking for a fun take on the adolescence of some of their favorite characters.


If you would like to order Gotham High

Book Depository

Barnes and Nobles



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