Marvel and Random House Worlds announce 3 WHAT IF…? adult novels


On Thursday, June 22, Marvel Entertainment and Random House Worlds, an imprint of Random House, a division of Penguin Random House, announced an adult novel series carrying on the classic Marvel tradition of “What If…?” storytelling. Each Random House Worlds’ “What If…?” series will be set in a distinct universe in the Multiverse and reimagine the origins of an iconic Marvel hero, allowing readers to discover what can happen when the fabric of reality is altered. The series will launch in 2024 with three titles.

What If...Loki Was Worthy
Photo: Random House Worlds

The first of the three What If…? adult novels is What If…Loki Was Worthy? A Loki and Valkyrie Story by Madeleine Roux (Star WarsDungeons & Dragons, Critical Role). In the novel, Loki and Valkyrie seek redemption. What If…Loki Was Worthy? will be published on March 12, 2024. 

Here is how Random House Worlds describes the plot of the novel:

So many worlds, so little time. Infinite possibilities, creating infinite realities. Long have I watched the trickster god sow chaos. But…what if Loki saved Asgard from Tony Stark’s revenge?

Thor—Son of Odin, God of Thunder, wielder of the hammer Mjolnir—is dead. And Loki is responsible.

It was only meant to be a joke — tampering with the Destroyer, changing Thor’s course to Midgard — a bit of mischief with a chance of maiming. But Loki’s harmless prank spiraled out of control, unleashing death and destruction on New York City and the heroes sworn to protect it. The city was saved, but at the cost of Thor’s life.

Furious and heartbroken, the All-Father banishes Loki to Earth for his crime. Loki finds himself in a realm of boxed wine, instant noodles, and some sort of regional performance troupe known as the “Buffalo Bills.” It’s a meager existence, far from Asgard’s grand courts, but he finds his new friend, Brian the Gecko, a much more engaging companion than the sycophants back home. A true meeting of the minds. Loki is the God of Mischief — but he knows, deep down, that he never truly deserved to stand next to their father’s golden child Thor, as two true sons of Odin.

Yet, he cannot even endure his exile in peaceful isolation. A Valkyrie — Hel-bent on carrying out her oath to Thor — barges into his trailer-home with his brother’s final words from the beyond: a plea to find a certain Dr. Jane Foster and pass on Mjolnir to its rightful heir.

While Loki struggles to fulfill his brother’s last request, the far-reaching consequences of his fatal prank return to haunt him. Blinded by grief from those he lost in the chaos wrought by Asgard, Iron Man vows revenge on those who consider themselves gods. Determined to protect the Earth from the might of this unpredictable alien power, he forges Asgard’s own weaponry into a lethal suit of armor, set on eradicating any tether between their worlds. Consequences be damned. When Asgard looks to Loki for salvation, he must answer the question: Am I truly worthy?

The second book in the series is What If…Wanda Maximoff and Peter Parker Were Siblings? A Scarlet Witch and Spider-Man Story by Seanan McGuire (Ghost-Spider, King in Black: Gwenom vs. Carnage). It is set to publish in July 2024.

The third book is What If…Marc Spector Was a Host to Venom? A Moon Knight and Venom Story by Mike Chen (Star Trek: Deep Space Nine – The Dogs of War. The book is set to publish in October 2024.

Penguin Random House Audio will publish audiobook editions for all novels.

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