Hero

Hero

Book - 2007
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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.
Publisher: New York : Hyperion, c2007
Edition: 1st ed
ISBN: 9781423101963
9781423101956
1423101952
Branch Call Number: y MOORE
Characteristics: 428 p. ; 22 cm

Opinion

From Library Staff

Thom's Dad used to be a superhero until a tragedy. Now Thom keeps secrets from his dad: his own superpowers and the fact that he’s gay.

Thom's father used to be one of the most well-known superheroes until a tragedy ruined his reputation and crippled him. So Thom keeps secrets from his dad to keep from hurting him - secrets like Thom’s own superpowers and the fact he’s is gay.

Thom Creed has a dilemma. Make that two dilemmas. He's never told anyone he's gay or about his superpowers.

Knowing his father lives with the shame of being seen as a murder after being kicked out of the The League of superheroes, the last thing in the world Thom would ever want is to disappoint his father. SoThom keeps two secrets from him: First is that he's gay. The second is that he has the power t... Read More »

Thom Creed has a dilemma. Make that two dilemmas. He's never told anyone he's gay or about his superpower.


From the critics


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PimaLib_JessicaP May 25, 2016

This was a fantastic read. Some people say it takes on too many things...but I think the interesting thing is the duality of the story itself. It's not about a guy coming into his powers who just happens to be gay; nor is it about a gay teen coming to terms with his sexuality who just happens to have super powers in a super world. It's about a kid accepting who he is in life, whether that be coming out or deciding whether or not to join the [Justice] League. Compelling, heartwrenching, and occasionally mindboggling.

I will defer towards some peoples' comments on all-encompassing writing style. There were a couple of times I had to flip back a couple chapters to recall storytelling order--particularly when discussing timing.

d
dtsopnde
May 18, 2016

This is my favorite book. As a teenager, I yearned for something that would wasn't just another another typical gay romance story. This book took my superhero fantasies and brought them to life with this awkward teenager going through the crap of being a teenager with a "dysfunctional" (to say the least) family, as well as having to sift through these feelings he's discovering about himself.
In the midst of this action packed teen drama, is this little love story which Moore expertly dabs at. Tom is not just another gay teen lead but just a teen who happens to be gay...but doesn't have time to focus on that because his life is falling apart and he has to maybe save the world...Yup, this book gave me hope for gay fiction as a teen. RIP Perry.

QueenBoadicea Aug 30, 2015

I’ll admit it. I was initially drawn to this book because it had a gay superhero in it. I’d read an anthology of books written about supers and their sidekicks who batted for the home team and thought it a lovely addition to the gay erotica I usually read. However, this isn’t homosexual love story with super-powered elements thrown in so much as a superhero tale with a tepid gay romance attached. The superhero impact on gender issues is important in its way; the author posits how supers might be just as awkward about different sexuality as ordinary citizens. But a sour note about the so-called heroes saving the city starts to creep in practically from the first chapter and the bitterness only grows as the novel progresses. The main character, one Thom Creed, is a superhero in training as well as a closeted homosexual. Through his eyes, the reader gradually comes to the conclusion that being a hero is more than donning a costume, cape and secret identity. It’s about coming to grips with yourself, the people around you and learning your place in the world. (Wow, what a radical message that is.) That this lesson comes at the expense of the other so-called heroes is, however, a bitter pill to swallow. There are riffs on popular superheroes from DC and Marvel as well as others; Mr. Moore is well versed on comic book nerd culture. But the book systematically knocks down its supers, revealing them to have feet of clay and some seriously damaging issues or ridiculous personas. American Agent, e.g., is a clear stand-in for Captain America. Mr. Moore describes his creation in this fashion: “He had bored me even during his prime—all he had was some superstrength serum and an inordinate sense of pride, that was about it. I kicked him in the groin and went on to the next challenge.” Ouch. This reader came to the conclusion that Mr. Moore doesn’t really like the idea of superheroes all that much (which makes Stan Lee’s one-line endorsement on the cover a bit of real irony). Not being a comic book geek, I could forgive and forget having superheroes trashed like so many politicians caught sleeping with their mistresses. But the gay love story that is supposed to be the other focus of this novel doesn’t make up for the smearing of so many other main characters. Thom kisses a couple of guys and hugs one. That’s it. Mr. Moore doesn’t dare anything more radical than that and the disappointment over his timidity is enough for me to find this book a real letdown. In the end, I didn’t feel like flying. I felt as if I’d been kicked off a high building and landed with a splat. Move along, people, nothing more to see here.

f
FindingJane
Aug 30, 2015

I’ll admit it. I was initially drawn to this book because it had a gay superhero in it. I’d read an anthology of books written about supers and their sidekicks who batted for the home team and thought it a lovely addition to the gay erotica I usually read. However, this isn’t homosexual love story with super-powered elements thrown in so much as a superhero tale with a tepid gay romance attached. The superhero impact on gender issues is important in its way; the author posits how supers might be just as awkward about different sexuality as ordinary citizens. But a sour note about the so-called heroes saving the city starts to creep in practically from the first chapter and the bitterness only grows as the novel progresses. The main character, one Thom Creed, is a superhero in training as well as a closeted homosexual. Through his eyes, the reader gradually comes to the conclusion that being a hero is more than donning a costume, cape and secret identity. It’s about coming to grips with yourself, the people around you and learning your place in the world. (Wow, what a radical message that is.) That this lesson comes at the expense of the other so-called heroes is, however, a bitter pill to swallow. There are riffs on popular superheroes from DC and Marvel as well as others; Mr. Moore is well versed on comic book nerd culture. But the book systematically knocks down its supers, revealing them to have feet of clay and some seriously damaging issues or ridiculous personas. American Agent, e.g., is a clear stand-in for Captain America. Mr. Moore describes his creation in this fashion: “He had bored me even during his prime—all he had was some superstrength serum and an inordinate sense of pride, that was about it. I kicked him in the groin and went on to the next challenge.” Ouch. This reader came to the conclusion that Mr. Moore doesn’t really like the idea of superheroes all that much (which makes Stan Lee’s one-line endorsement on the cover a bit of real irony). Not being a comic book geek, I could forgive and forget having superheroes trashed like so many politicians caught sleeping with their mistresses. But the gay love story that is supposed to be the other focus of this novel doesn’t make up for the smearing of so many other main characters. Thom kisses a couple of guys and hugs one. That’s it. Mr. Moore doesn’t dare anything more radical than that and the disappointment over his timidity is enough for me to find this book a real letdown. In the end, I didn’t feel like flying. I felt as if I’d been kicked off a high building and landed with a splat. Move along, people, nothing more to see here.

e
Emma_Sophia
Jul 30, 2014

Fluffy, fun, action. Unusual queer literature.
I would give it 6.5/10 stars. I liked this book. It was a fun, light read. Thom was a great narrator and the story was written in a way that not only got readers interested but kept them engaged in the story. However, it wasn’t a book with a ton of substance, so while it was good for what it was, don’t expect anything else.
Who would like this book: people who like action/adventure books or movies, superhero books or comics. It also may appeal to those interested in queer lit, but one would have to like adventure stories because that takes up most of the plot.
This book reminds me of comic books—the superheroes are right out of a Marvel or DC comic or movie. In addition, it reminds me of The Lightning Thief, in that there is a character realizing and learning to use and control their powers.
Favorite quote: “Sometimes you’re called upon to make a split-second decision to do the right thing, defining which way your life will go. These are the decisions that make you who you are.”

d
drewscow
Dec 08, 2013

It was a interesting read, and to be perfectly honest the only reason why I even read it was because the main character was a gay superhero. That idea just made me giggle with glee, as most gay novels are focused on coming out and coming to terms with homosexuality and all of that jazz. This book was no exception. The book was flat, predictable, and didn't go to deep with significant character development. At some points in the book, the plot was either going too fast or too slow. Besides it's flaws, Hero is good and in the shallow pool of LGBT/Super hero books to read from I do highly recommend this one.

m
mapletea
Jul 27, 2013

This book is one of my absolute favourites. Not the typical superhero book, which made it really interesting. Awesome book.

a
aniksteeves
Jul 25, 2013

I really liked this book because it didn't seem like the typical superhero book, it was a lot of fun to read. The downside was that it was predictable and many of the superhero's were very similar to ones that already existed.

wonderlands Apr 24, 2013

I leaped at the chance to read this book when I saw it for the first time a few months ago. I mean, as an avid comic reader and a member of the lgbt community myself, gay superhero just seemed up my alley.

This book, however, completely flopped with my expectations. The author does not even try to come up with a strong, interesting plot and all the heroes are ripped completely off from DC's characters, with one word in their name changed.

Unimaginative, unoriginal, and definitely not worth the time you'll spend reading it.

d
dprodrig
Jan 30, 2013

What would you do if you were gay and had the potential to be a super-hero? Can those two things even mix? And what if your dad and family had been destroyed by the very organization that offers the super-hero training? What would you do? Well written, complex book that requires you to accept the characters and let your own agenda and plot expectations go.

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Quotes

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SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“You can't go on like you're going to start really living one day like all this is some preamble to some great life thats magically going to appear. I'm a firm believer that you have to create your own miracles, don't hold out that there's something better waiting on the other side. It doesn't work that way. When you're gone, you're gone. Don't wait.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“But everything had changed, and I was becoming more and more of who I really was, and less of this person I had thought I wanted to be.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“Maybe you all didn't notice,but when that hospital was about to crumble with all those innocent people inside, Thom was the only one who stopped the Wrecking Balls. The only finger I feel like pointing right now is my middle one, at all of you, bunch of ungrateful wretches, if you ask me.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

"I'm Thom." I scratched a dry patch above my elbow. "I can heal things. Sometimes.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“Now I was the only one left. I thought about what I was going to say: Oh, hi there, I'm Thom. I just want to say what an honor it is to be a part of this prestigious team. A leader that wants to kick my ass, some bitchy girl with a major attitude problem, a geriatric precog, a guy who should probably be quarantined at the Center for Disease Control, and me, just your average, ordinary, gay teen superhero. Surely we're what the founding members had in mind when they banded together to form the world's premier superhero group. What's not to be excited about?

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“You can't go on like you're going to start really living one day like all this is some preamble to some great life that's magically going to appear. I'm a firm believer that you have to create your own miracles, don't hold out that there's something waiting on the other side. It doesn't work that way. When you're gone, you're gone. There's no pearly white gates with an open bar and all the Midori you can drink. You get one go-around and you gotta make it count. I know that it sounds harsh, but it's true. Don’t wait.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“But everything had changed, and I was becoming more and more of who I really was, and less of this person I had thought I wanted to be.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“You can't go on like you're going to start really living one day like all this is some preamble to some great life thats magically going to appear. I'm a firm believer that you have to create your own miracles, don't hold out that there's something better waiting on the other side. It doesn't work that way. When you're gone, you're gone. Don't wait.”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“I filled my head with thoughts of the future, of infinite possibly. There's someone out there who will one day find me and fall in love with me and prove that all this waiting actually meant something....”

SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

“Once in a while, life gives you a chance to measure your worth. Sometimes you're called upon to make a split-second decision to do the right thing, defining which way your life will go. These are the decisions that make you who you are.”

Age

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indigo_nightingale_42 thinks this title is suitable for 13 years and over

r
rem85
Apr 05, 2013

rem85 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

EuSei Aug 26, 2012

EuSei thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Summary

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SAPPHIREBEAR15 Jun 18, 2012

Thom Creed is a high school basketball star. His mother abandoned the family and his father is a former masked crimefighter who retired in disgrace following a national incident and now works as a lowly worker in a factory. Thom's own superpowers are beginning to manifest themselves, as is his homosexuality. But Thom must keep his powers a secret, for fear of further disgracing his father and risking his hometown's homophobic wrath.
But as Thom's sexuality becomes more troublesome, he decides to run away from home. He immediately becomes mixed up in a battle between some villains and The League, and does well enough to be invited to try out for the team. Thom is accepted as a trainee, and assigned to work with a group of other probationary heroes. The stress of keeping so many secrets from his father exacts a painful toll.
Soon, however, the world's superheroes begin dying under mysterious circumstances. In order to solve the mystery, Thom must reunite with his fellow outcast trainees and deal as well with society's prejudices when his secrets are revealed.

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