Prather’s Pick: ‘Even Superheroes Make Mistakes’ has positive message for young readers
December 18, 2018
This week's book would have made a great Christmas gift for a young reader, if I had found it early enough. Maybe it would be a great New Years gift — or even one for Valentine's Day. The picture book has a positive message for young readers and, in fact, readers of any age.
"Even Superheroes Make Mistakes" was written by Shelly Becker and illustrated by Eda Kaban. It's a brand new (2018) book published by Sterling Children's Books.
The eight superhero characters in the book have names the reader will not recognize, names such as Magnifique and Screecher.
As the book begins, there has been a robbery, but it's the bad guys who have the upper hand. Not only have the bad guys robbed an antique store, they have also captured the superheroes. One of seven masked robbers has Screech under his arm. Another holds Thrash over his head, and three robbers ride on a scooter. One holds an antique clock, mirror, and a bag of other stuff over his head, and perched way on top are three superheroes — Magnifique, Icy, and Laserman — and they're all tied up.
On the next two pages, the reader finds the superheroes, who have apparently been dropped off by the robbers. They're getting out of their ropes while Screech does a lot of screeching. One can only imagine what he is yelling.
Meanwhile, the robbers are having a great time as they get away with their loot. The superheroes have goofed. What to do? They can scream, as Screech is doing, or cry or deny what they didn't do or claim the situation isn't fair. They can even rip off their capes and quit in despair.
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The fact of matter is, superheroes make mistakes the same as anybody else. They might put too much salt in the super cakes they bake (pretty cakes, too) or bungle a speech at a Hero Convention, putting the audience to sleep, or nab the police instead of bad guys during a bank robbery.
What ashamed superheroes might do is figure out what comes next. That means stopping and considering "Operation Fresh Start," with alternative plans all drawn out on a lecture board. It might include baking some cookies with less salt and giving them to the policemen who were wrongfully captured during the bank robbery.
There are still other examples of the ways superheroes can take their errors in stride, besides name-calling, hiding out, or blaming. The point of the book is that perfection is rare, even for superheroes, and true heroes fix what they wreck and apologize, too. They learn from their mistakes. It's all about taking responsibility.
This is a book with a timeless message for everyone. What a great addition to a school or home library.
"Even Superheroes Make Mistakes" costs $16.95 in hardcover. Ask the staff at Downtown Books in Craig if they might order the book for you. It is also available at the Craig branch of Moffat County Libraries, shelved with new books in the children's room.