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Hero by Perry Moore

August 18, 2007

cover of Hero by Perry MooreWhat makes a superhero? Is it superpowers? Or is it more mundane things like courage and compassion?

Thom Creed’s father used to be a superhero. Now he’s an outcast, a single father doing the best he can to raise his son. Thom knows how hard his father works and doesn’t want to burden him with more, but the secrets Thom is keeping are becoming harder to bear.

Thom is gay and has known it for a while. His father once made it clear how he feels about gay men and Thom does not want to lose his father’s love. And now Thom is also starting to manifest a superpower, the ability to heal people. After unexpectedly displaying his powers, Thom receives an invitation to try out for the League, the superhero collective his father once belonged to. The other aspiring heroes auditioning for the League have impressive powers of their own. To his surprise, Thom makes it on to the probationary roster. But fearing his father’s reaction, Thom lies and tells him that he’s got summer league basketball games when he’s actually practicing with a squad of other probationary League members.

Almost every character in Hero has a secret or two, even Thom’s mother, who disappeared years ago. The secrets are kept out of shame or because of expectations and the fear of disappointment, but at what cost? Thanks to his squad, particularly Ruth, a crotchety precog, and Scarlett, whose personality is as fiery as her power, Thom realizes that he can’t let his secrets fester. But how can he tell the truth when doing so may lose him the one person he has left?

Hero is Perry Moore’s impressive fiction debut. Thom’s circumstances and secrets could have made him whiny and self-pitying. Instead, he is confused and compelling, honest with himself even as he lies to his father.

There’s a lot going on in the book, plot-wise. (I haven’t even mentioned basketball, Goran, or murder.) But the plot never hinders character development or the relationships Thom forges. And for all the heavy subjects the book touches on, it’s also pretty funny. C’mon, a squadmate called Typhoid Larry?

Hero will be published August 28. Don’t miss it.
It has also been reviewed by Patti of Oops…Wrong Cookie and Professor Nana
And Perry Moore was A Fuse #8 Production’s Hot Man of Children’s Literature No. 32

Updated 9/11/07 to add: You can also visit Perry Moore’s website, which includes his “Who Cares About the Death of a Gay Superhero?” handout I mentioned earlier.

9 Comments leave one →
  1. teenbookreview permalink
    August 18, 2007 3:28 pm

    Great review! I can’t wait to read the book.

  2. August 19, 2007 9:21 pm

    Thanks. And it was a fabulous book.

  3. Raji permalink
    December 10, 2007 4:39 am

    Will there be a sequel? It’s such a great book!

  4. December 10, 2007 12:45 pm

    Yes, there will be a sequel.

  5. Emily permalink
    December 27, 2007 6:27 pm

    Absolutly loved the book!! Thom is a hero from the beginning even if he doesn’t get his full powers until later on!! Goran and Thom make a really cute couple


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