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Marvel Novel Series   (1978)
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Publisher: Pocket Books

Publication Date: 1978 - 1979

Country: United States

Language: English

An 11-book series of mass market paperbacks recounting in prose the adventures of Marvel Superheroes.

Marv Wolfman, an author and the co-editor of the series, recalled during a September 2009 interview with Paul Kupperberg (posted on Kupperberg's outstanding blog, "Capes, Cowls & Costumes" at how the Marvel Novel Series came to be: "Pocket Books asked us to write the first Spider-Man novel in something like 30 days. If I recall, I wrote the first draft and Len the second, which was the only way it was possible to do. After we finished, we were asked if we’d like to write all 12 books. We wanted to, but the money was awful, so we turned it down. They hired another writer to do the second book, but after they got it, they called us and said they’d meet our price if we took it over.

Paul Levitz, who was then an assistant at DC Comics — he’s publisher and president today — played cards with us and, though much younger than us, a better businessman. He said we should package the novels and not necessarily write them if we didn’t want to. Writing them ourselves, the schedule would have been brutal, so we took Paul’s advice, told Pocket we’d package the books instead and they agreed. We had eight days for the next book, so I wrote that while we assigned the rest, all based on what we knew to be Marvel’s top characters at the time."

Though planned to be a 12-book series, it ended with #11. Wolfman recalled, "There was one [] more novel, written by the late science-fiction author, cartoonist, photographer, etc. Wiliam Rotsler, that was never published. He wrote a Silver Surfer novel, and it was excellent, but it was decided that nobody but Stan Lee could write the Surfer, and the book never was published. But Bill had done a great job, so it’s a real shame."

Number of issues cataloged: 12

Issue   Title   Story Arc   Cover Date
  The Hulk and Spider-Man: Murdermoon
  October 1979
  The Avengers: The Man Who Stole Tomorrow
  The Marvel Superheroes
  August 1979
  Spider-Man: Crime Campaign
  July 1979
  Dr. Strange: Nightmare
  Iron Man: And Call My Killer... Modok!
  June 1979
  Fantastic Four: Doomsday
  May 1979
  Captain America: Holocaust For Hire
  May 1979
  The Incredible Hulk: Cry Of The Beast
  April 1979
  The Incredible Hulk: Stalker From The Stars
  Spider-Man: Mayhem in Manhattan

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