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Literature / Blaze (or Love in the Time of Supervillains)

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Blaze (or Love in the Time of Supervillains) is a 2012 Teen novel by Laurie Boyle Crompton. The eponymous heroine, Blaze, is a 15-year-old girl looking forward to her senior year of high school in a small town. Her chief interests are comic-books, both reading and drawing them, and Mark, coach of her little brother Josh's soccer team. With her father off pursuing an acting career in New York, and her mother busy pulling double-shifts as a nurse, she's stuck playing "soccer mom" and ferrying her dorky little brother and his friends, the Mighty Cretins, around town. Much to her amazement, Mark shows an interest in her and she starts hanging out with him, and then dating him.

Then, Mark humiliates her, so she takes revenge the only way she knows how, by making Mark a villain in her comic. Unfortunately, Mark has a counter-move which threatens to derail Blaze's senior year, and possibly her entire life...

This book exhibits the following tropes:

  • Auto Erotica: Blaze's first sexual encounter is in the back of her van, the Superturd.
  • The Casanova: Mark has a long line of blonde conquests. Blaze is just another notch on the bedpost.
  • Disappeared Dad: Blaze and Josh's father is in New York pursuing his acting career. A reconciliation is teased at several points, and Blaze sincerely believes he's come home eventually, but ultimately, she comes to realize that he cares more about pursuing acting than he does about his family.
  • Dogged Nice Guy: Ryan to Blaze. He just keeps hanging around and trying to come up with ways to get her to spend time around him. When Blaze gains a reputation as a slut, he gleefully joins in on the mockery.
  • Gasshole: Ajay of the Mighty Cretins has his as his distinguishing trait.
  • Hormone-Addled Teenager: Josh's friend and teammate Dylan has as his recurring trait his attempts to ogle Blaze whenever he thinks she's not watching.
  • Slut-Shaming: Present in full measure. From the early pages, Blaze and her friends participate in furthering the legend of Catherine Wiggan, aka Wiggles, known for taking on entire sports teams at a time It turns out that Catherine was the victim of a rumor that snowballed and is actually a virgin. And later, Blaze has a nearly-topless photo of her posted online. In both cases, it's made clear that everyone is willing to jump on the bandwagon and make the girls' lives a living hell.
  • Teen Pregnancy: Blaze has a scare when her period if late. Fortunately, it turns out to not be the case.
  • When You Coming Home, Dad?: A rare female version, Blaze's mother pulls frequent double-shifts as a nurse, which means she's not around for her kids as often as she wants to be, especially with Dad off in New York.