One of the first books I read from my Philly comic con stack, New Avengers: Illuminati gives a behind the scenes look at some of the most powerful/influential people in the Marvel Universe. But what did I think of it? I'm not positive, but I'm pretty sure that these issues came out originally around the time that Marvel was setting up Secret Invasion. The premise of the book is that Iron Man, Professor X, Black Bolt, Namor, Reed Richards and Dr. Strange have secretly made up a group called the "Illuminati", which they use to talk about issues facing the whole planet and other threats. A large part of the book surrounds the events after the Kree-Skrull War and the Skrulls attempt to invade Earth.
Afterwards, the Illuminati inform the Skrulls that they will not stand for them to try and attack the Earth again. This begins a series of events that leads towards the Skrulls plotting Secret Invasion. In addition, there is also a story introducing the reader to the Infinity Gems and has the Illuminati discussing what to do with items that are known to hold such great power.
Given that the primary point of this book is to give the reader some background on events that happened in the Marvel universe, I think it does a very good job of explaining everything that a person needs to know. It succeeds in telling a story where you dont need to have read anything else to understand whats going on. Reading this along with Secret Invasion obviously provides several benefits and completely rounds out the story, but on its own, this book is entertaining.
CONCLUSION: Borrow. The book is not super awesome or impacting, but its a fun read that flushes out the Secret Invasion storyline. If you aren't reading that trade or didn't find it interesting at all, then you can pass on this book.
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