Cox's The Dark Knight Rises (Titan, 2012; Gr 9 Up) provides a gripping recounting of the movie's plot. The story unfolds on a scale both epic and intimate, as the citizens of Gotham are threatened by a ruthless terrorist named Bane and his army of followers, and Bruce Wayne struggles for balance between his own existence and that of his alter ego. Written with a sense of gritty realism, the accessible narrative has a pared-down quality that keeps the pages turning quickly. Action scenes, large-scale skirmishes, and fist-to-fist confrontations are described with suspenseful rat-a-tat pacing, while dialogue exchanges and moments of introspection reveal the characters' back stories and personal motivations.
Though violence is an integral part of the telling (and there is some strong language), it is not gratuitous, and malicious schemes are countered by the actions of altruistic individuals and the emergence of unexpected heroes. The point of view shifts among the players, providing readers with a broad IMAX-style perspective as the various story lines develop and intersect; plot twists are foreshadowed but kept tightly shrouded until the appropriate time, building toward a thrilling conclusion. Teens will be drawn in by the movie-poster cover—the enigmatic Caped Crusader silhouetted against the fiery profile of a bat emblazoned in the Gotham sky—and satisfied by the book's explosive action and solid storytelling.