My Dad, My Hero by Ethan Long

Thanks to Marvel and DC Comics for ‘spoiling the market’, expectations of heroes have never been higher. But what Batman, Spiderman, Ironman and all the other comic-book ‘superheroes’ have in common — other than superhuman abilities and a predilection for costumes — is that they are NOT dads.

If you ask me, putting in long hours at work and then summoning up reserve energy to horse around with the kids after a trying day, keeping a grouchy mother(-of-1/2/3/4/5, doesn’t matter – we all have our testy moments) happy, and being the default driver, handyman, porter and pest-control guy in the household, are all extraordinary abilities that are way more practical than, say, shooting webs out of wrists, or zipping from place to place at the speed of light and thus avoiding road taxes and traffic jams, and generally saving the world from catastrophes… Hmm. Well, let’s see if these guys can do the same with a couple of kids thrown into the picture, eh? But I digress.

My Dad, My Hero is a funny and sweet book that describes a regular everyday dad, as narrated through the eyes of his son. In keeping with the superhero theme alluded to on the cover, the hilarious illustrations inside are presented in large-format comic-style frames, complete with speech bubbles and the appropriate fonts.

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By conventional standards, the father in the book is not exactly superhero material — in fact, very far from it, and the author does well in milking the comedy in this contrast. But, as this book reminds us, all daddies ARE super in their own special ways, especially in the eyes of their children — just the way they are.

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