Author: Perry Moore
Publisher: Hyperion, an imprint of Disney Book Group
Release Date: 2007
Page Count: 428
Rating: 4 ½ /5 stars
The last thing in the world Thom Creed wants is to add to his father's pain, so he keeps secrets. Like that he has special powers. And that he's been asked to join the League the very organization of superheroes that spurned his dad. But the most painful secret of all is one Thom can barely face himself: he's gay.
But becoming a member of the League opens up a new world to Thom. There, he connects with a misfit group of aspiring heroes, including Scarlett, who can control fire but not her anger; Typhoid Larry, who can make anyone sick with his touch; and Ruth, a wise old broad who can see the future. Like Thom, these heroes have things to hide; but they will have to learn to trust one another when they uncover a deadly conspiracy within the League.
To survive, Thom will face challenges he never imagined. To find happiness, he'll have to come to terms with his father's past and discover the kind of hero he really wants to be.
Have you ever wondered where young heroes like Spider-Man and Robin get their start? Well this novel is not exactly like that.
Hero by Perry Moore is an origin story for a young superhero named Thom Creed. It tells a great beginning to his powers and his kind of embarrassing attempts at superheroics, all the while dealing with Thom’s life at home, as the son of a retired superhero! Oh and did I mention he’s gay? No? Woops, my bad.
Thom is a young boy, whose father, Hal Creed, is a retired superhero, kind of a pastiche of Batman and Captain America, and they live in rural suburbia trying to make some kind of a living. Thom himself is a bit of a backseat driver in his own tale, which can get grating a bit. However, he generally has the compassion of a true hero, keeping secrets from his father so as to protect him. His powers are a bit of a confusion and not exactly introduced in a normal way, but in a world of heroes and being related to one, it makes sense. Thom is asked to audition for the League, a team that spurs his father, and in a bid to prove himself as a young man trying to come to terms with his home and school lives and his sexuality, Thom accepts and meets his squad of fellow trainees.
Hal Creed is actually quite a complex character. He’s a “forced” retired superhero, and they story doesn’t go too much into why he was forced into retirement or why the vast majority of people who meet his father respond with negative comments and outright hostility. Creed Sr. dos not have superpowers. As a result of his past, Hal resents powered people and has a huge issue with homosexuals.
The other characters include, the elderly precog (psychic) Ruth, who reminds me of Sophia from the Golden Girls, Typhoid Larry, a young hero who’s only power is to get sick (charming no?), Scarlett, a fiery pyrokinetic with a past and story all her own, and Golden Boy, a younger member of the League as their sponsor and rival towards Thom. Not to mention the other members of the League, and a mysterious basketball rival named Gorlan who Thom connects to when he has his down time.
This story has the makings of a great origin story to a great hero story full of suspense, drama, heroics, comedy, mystery, pastiches out the wazoo to famous heroes from comics, and even some wonderful family and friend PSAs! If you like superheroes, enjoy YA novels, and maybe want to broaden your library into some new LGBT novels, Hero is probably one of the best out there!