Alex Segura — whose comics industry historical mystery novel Secret Identity was a favorite of ours — has a new novel out this week, a work-for-hire YA romp through the Spider-Verse featuring Spider-Man 2099.
The book is Araña/Spider-Man 2099: Dark Tomorrow, and it’s about a time-travelling teen gifted with the usual spider powers. It also features a number of Easter Eggs that will be a good-time for folks who are familiar with the comics. Ahead of the book’s release, Segura was kind enough to share a quick note about those Easter Eggs.
You can find his note below, after the novel’s excellent cover, and when you’re done, you can head off to hunt those Easter Eggs for yourself…enjoy!
“The challenge and joy of writing any kind of work-for-hire is balancing your passion for the source material with telling a good story. The trick is, often, to dovetail the two. What nods to canon and the past can help execute the bigger mission: writing a fun adventure?
That was top of mind for me as I crafted my YA Spider-Verse novel, Araña/Spider-Man 2099: Dark Tomorrow — out this week from Marvel Press/Disney Books. I grew up obsessed with Spider-Man — he was my favorite superhero, and I was also an avid reader of his future counterpart, Spider-Man 2099. Discovering the latter was an important moment of identification for me,as a Cuban-American kid reading comics in Miami. I didn’t see a lot of characters like me or my friends starring in comics back then, so realizing that Miguel was half-Mexican was a revelation. Maybe *I* could be Spider-Man, too?
This is a long-winded way of saying, dear reader, that I was very much “in the weeds” when I got the gig from Marvel to write this novel – which pairs teen Spider-Hero Anya Corazon/Araña with Miguel in a time-hopping adventure that has as much heart as action. When an ancient artifact disrupts Anya’s powers in the present day and sends her reeling into the future, she must reach out to the one person she knows will help her: Spider-Man. But she discovers that the Spidey from 2099 isn’t as willing to lend a hand. Can the two heroes put aside their differences and come together to stop the villainous plot before all time is unraveled? Well, you’ll have to read the book.
Which brings me to the Easter Eggs — of which this book has plenty. Whether it’s the return of Anya’s teen friend from the original Araña series to cameos by a major Clone Saga villain, on of JMS’s best-known additions to Spider-Man’s rogues gallery, or one-offs like a Hobgoblin offshoot or low-rent Lizard knockoff, the book is loaded with nods to Spider-Man, Araña, and Spidey 2099’s history. That’s for the hardcore fans picking it up to enjoy another adventure in the vein of the awesome Spider-Verse animated films who are also avid readers of the comics. The challenge is, making those Easter Eggs just that – added bonuses or treats as opposed to distractions. To make that work, your focus has to be on the story first. That’s the meal. That’s what people — fans or not — will enjoy. The rest is just dressing. Nice if you like it, but also just additive.” –Alex Segura