Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Review: Hero

I love my books (well, reading materiel anything, but that's not the point just here), and I'll pick up anything that sounds interesting enough. Sometimes, that can get me into trouble. It's happened before, and there's flat-out nothing preventing it from happening again. This time, it was a book called Hero.

The premise of the book is pretty simple. A kid finds out that his dad was the world's one and only superhero, and that he's inherited his dad's powers -- when his dad dies. Sounds cool, right? I'm pretty sure I can't sum it up accurately and make it sound not-awesome. Which becomes part of the problem...

I distinctly recall thinking at several times during the book "Y'know what, this isn't very good. Like, at all. I'm just not going to bother finishing it." I did end up finishing it, but I'll be blunt -- it was out of sheer momentary boredom. The kid's powers are vaguely-defined, and not touched on enough for me to really wonder about them anyways. Okay, it's not a powers-based, and it's not an action-based either. So it's gonna be character-based, right?

Nope. I don't feel anything for any of the characters. Now, in one particular case, that's not really a bad thing. One of the major (well, 'major' -- none of the characters in the book really feel like major-character materiel to me) characters turns out to be a bad guy. Except, he's really more of a not-good guy -- there's no foreshadowing, there's nothing to clue the reader in that he's a bad guy, there's no trying to figure out that he's a bad guy; it's just suddenly "Oh. He was a bad guy." But I'll give him a pass on it anyway, because it won't help. Everyone else is flat, flat, flat, including the mysterious mentor dude character -- who, interestingly enough, feels like the most well-developed character in the book. Says something that I still feel the best-developed character flat.

So, there's no 'Awesome!' to keep me interested in the book (I was attracted by the potential awesome), and there's no character to keep me interested in the book, so what's left? Nothing, that's what. Well, unless you count tracking books you don't like so you can dissect them and hyper-analyze why you don't like them. That's a real thing, but it's not nearly enough to get me to recommend a book.

Final verdict: Dump it. I still don't really know why I finished it. It has no redeeming qualities, unless you're looking for what not to do. Oddly, this writer has had books published before. I can't speak to those, but if this is typical I honestly can't see how.

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