Mike Lupica is a wonderful writer, and both adults and children have enjoyed his many sports-related works. In Hero, Lupica's writing branches out and enters the realm of superheroes. And he does it with the fine writing, solid characterizations, and fabulous plot construction that make his other children's books so popular with readers of all ages.
Hero is the story of Billy Harriman, an only child with a wealthy mother and a famous father. The book grabs the reader from the first chapter, the first paragraph, even the first sentence, and it continues strong until the last sentence. Hero is full of enough action to please even the most discriminating adventure reader, yet also delves into Billy's relationship with his dad. To please female readers, Billy's best friend is Kate, their housekeeper's daughter, who is equal to Billy in intelligence, if not in superpowers.
This book has it all--characters who are not what they seem to be, magic, suspense, and--most of all--an adolescent struggling to find his place in the world. Billy is trying to deal with a school bully, a mother who is increasingly busy working on a presidential campaign, and a body that is changing in very unexpected, unreal ways. From dealing with the mundane to dealing with the fantastic, the reader is rooting for Billy throughout the book.
Billy Harriman thought he knew his dad. Knicks fan, ex-Harvard football star, special advisor to the President of the United States. And then Tom Harriman's plane crashes under mysterious circumstances and everything Billy thought he knew about his father explodes with it.
Now the same people who wanted his father dead want Billy very much alive. Why? Because Tom Harriman was no ordinary man. And because Billy is destined to follow in his footsteps.
As something no one even knows exists...
A fourteen-year-old superhero.
My only problem with the book (caveat: this is from the ARC and might change before publication of the final version) is that most of the book seems to be a lead-up to a sequel; Billy only gets a chance to be a hero at the very end, when he finds out who his true friends are.