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Heroes for My Son

4.13  ·  Rating Details  ·  622 Ratings  ·  119 Reviews
When Brad Meltzer's first son was born eight years ago, the bestselling writer and new father started compiling a list of heroes whose virtues and talents he wanted to share with his son: Abraham Lincoln, Rosa Parks, Jim Henson, Amelia Earhart, Muhammad Ali . . . and so many more, each one an ordinary person who was able to achieve the extraordinary. The list grew to inclu ...more
Hardcover, 128 pages
Published May 11th 2010 by Harper (first published 2010)
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Feb 27, 2013 Andrea rated it really liked it
Brad Melzer's Heroes for my Sonbegan as a project that centered around words of advice for his firstborn son. When Melzer started making progress, he realized it wasn't turning out as he had hoped, and he also realized that it was the people around him--family members and those he has read about--that inspired him to be a better person. Therefore, this book is a compilation of heroes--from those we all think of (Rosa Parks and Jackie Robinson) to those we may not have ever heard of (Dick and Ric ...more
Sarah InMI
May 03, 2010 Sarah InMI rated it it was amazing
I received this book for review, but having read some of Brad Meltzer's other work before, I was looking forward to this book.
This is not a novel, but rather a collection of vignettes, I suppose, about many people who he considered heroic because of their words, actions or (most likely) a combination of both.

However, rather than share the well known facts about these people that many of us are familiar with, Meltzer instead chose these fascinating details - and I found myself often reading snip
Opening lines:
I was stuck at a red light. It wasn’t a particularly long light. But I remember the moment because it was dark and it was quiet—the first moment of quiet on the day my son Jonas was born.

This is a collection of historical heroes who changed their lives in the benefit of the humanity.

I have read it at DailyLit but I couldn't find its own link to be posted here.
May 21, 2010 Allison rated it it was amazing
I read my coworker's copy of this that she bought for her son on my recommendation (after hearing Meltzer talk about it on NPR). This book is nothing short of a Fantastic Idea, well-executed. Every page turn provides a new hero to sit down with your son (or daughter; there's nothing gender-specific about this book besides the title) and have a conversation. In my view, you would read one hero per day with your child before bed and discuss what what your child does and doesn't understand, why tha ...more
Apr 06, 2011 Tryn rated it liked it
Each page layout contains a photo of an influential person, alongside a brief tribute. A quote from each featured hero is also included. In such a format, there isn’t room for much detail about the person’s life, but what detail is included is well-chosen and telling.

What drew me to this book was the the concept of choosing real-life heroes for our children. Kids have enough superheroes. Here are real men and women, imperfect, but shinning examples of one or more qualities that make them great.
A phenomenal piece of literature!

Brad Meltzer developed this "list" when his oldest child was born. The list is 50+ people who are teachers and / or inspirations to many. Some on the list are "usual" heroes: Washington, Lincoln, Mother Teresa, etc., while others may surprise you.

Each listing or entry is 2 pages long. At the top of the first page is the influence: innovator, dreamer, trailblazer, etc. Next is the name of the person and then how they are "known". In the middle of the page is a pi
Aug 21, 2010 Maria rated it it was amazing
Brad Meltzer began collecting stories about heroes when he first son was born. This book is a collection of 50+ heroes with a picture a one page summary of their heroism and one or two quotes from them.

Why I picked it up: It was recommended in a library magazine that I read.

Why I finished it: Picture me crying in Jiffy Lube, I went this morning to get my oil changed and while I sat in their waiting room, I read this book and cried. It's very inspiring and I think that this would be an awesome g
Apr 11, 2011 Melissa rated it really liked it
This wasn't the book I thought it was (I bought this thinking it was the book about the dying father who had his friends step in to teach his children about life. If anyone knows what that book is, please let me know). Anyhow, I thought I'd read this anyhow. It's a short book, each page includes a photo of the hero, a short paragraph or two about their feat, and a phrase. Some of the people were to be expected, some had new but interesting stories, some made me realize it's the little things tha ...more
May 09, 2016 Hope added it
Excellent little book with a two page spread per hero - consisting of a picture, short bio, and quote. Easy way to talk about ordinary people accomplishing great things with your kids.
Jun 17, 2012 Gena rated it it was ok
I am clearly in the minority here, but I was a bit disappointed in this book. I heard the author on NPR and I thought the heroes' stories would lead to some interesting conversations with my sons, but Meltzer just doesn't go far enough. Some of the heroes only get a few sentences about what makes them special. I found the the two pages given to each hero just didn't have enough information. I spent a lot of time giving background info to my kids about who these people were and additional details ...more
Jun 27, 2010 Courtney rated it it was amazing
This book is without question the best book I have ever read. It tells the shocking and amazing stories of Gahndi, Mother Teresa, Jackie Robinson, Dr. Suess, and many more. These are people who swept the world away with being the first black major league baseball player, an actual angel, earning rights for India peacefully, and creating childrens books that will live on for decades. i f you haven't read this you need to. It will make you be greatful for what you have and want to change the world ...more
Sep 02, 2010 Marcie rated it liked it
Recommended to Marcie by: NYTimes
I can see using this with classes as a brief (read 1-3 each day) kind of thing. It also would be interesting to have students select the "hero" of their choice to find more information about. I liked the layout and use of a brief quote by each hero. Most interesting to me were the few heroes with whom I was unfamiliar. I guess I thought there would be more unusual ones after reading the preface. Still a useful book.
Jun 23, 2010 Danika rated it it was ok
I liked the premise of this book- the author compiled a list of "heroes" to give to his son. I think there are 52 in the book, 2 pages per person. He includes people like Rosa Parks and George Washington. My complaint was that the snapshot of each hero is extremely superficial. I would have liked it more if each person was developed a bit better. Kind of more like a coffee table book due to its short-form format.
May 10, 2012 Kimberlee rated it it was amazing
I loved sharing this book with my tween son. Learning the back stories on some heroes I already knew and learning about new heroes that I was not aware of really inspired me to think about things that both my son and I do that are heroic. We shared some stories with the other members of our family, and I look forward to reading and sharing "Heroes for my Daughters" next.
Feb 19, 2012 Colleenish rated it it was amazing
I loved this book. It's just a collection of short facts about people that the author admires. The quotes and facts are interesting ones that I didn't necessarily know. I love the idea of teaching values through stories. I'm inspired to write my own book like this, and to read it to my little siblings. Everyone should know who Nelson Mandela etc is.
Feb 09, 2012 Mashael rated it it was amazing
I remember reading this book back in 2010. I finished it in one day or maybe less it's only 105 pages. Every time I turned a page I learned something new about an inspiring person & what that person did to change and help their society. Heroes for my son is one of the greatest books I've read through the years.
Mar 23, 2012 Maria rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2012
This is honestly a beautiful little book. Brad Meltzer writes heroes, he knows heroes. But he chooses here to tell the story of 52 real heroes, historical and modern. It's surprising how just a few sentences can tell so much about these people he believes his sons, and all of us, should learn from.
Mar 30, 2012 Brenda rated it it was amazing
Shelves: professional
I used this book as a model for a writing/research project in my senior English class. The results were amazing! It was uplifting to see the heroes my students chose to record for their future children. I highly recommend this book. Meltzer puts an interesting twist on the genre of heroes.
Mary Kenyon
May 11, 2012 Mary Kenyon rated it it was amazing
Fantastic little book! It would make a great gift for any kid in middle school or older. Each hero has a photo on the left hand page with a caption and then simple text on the right hand page that tells some interesting (and maybe unknown) attributes that make that person a hero.
Valerie Barnhart
1. Rosie Revere, Engineer by Andrea Beaty copyright 2013. Twin text for celebration of achievement of inventors nonfiction set.

2. This collection of great inventors, heroes, people willing to stand up for what is right, and pursue endeavors shows how many of them had to push through adversity in bad times. Harper Lee, John Lennon, Mother Teresa, Steven Spielberg, and many others are celebrated for their contributions to society. For some, it was a song, a story, a puppet, an invention, or even a
May 13, 2014 Jess rated it liked it
Recommended to Jess by: browsing
Found this while browsing my public library. It's the sort of book for May, given graduations and things of that sort.

It's an interesting flip-through of people Meltzer considers heroes. Each entry receives two pages. The first has a photo and a brief synopsis of the person. The second gives an example of why Meltzer considers the person a hero.

My main quibble is that the information paragraph(s) is too short. I wanted a little more of the story on most. Even keeping the same two-page format, t
May 09, 2011 John rated it did not like it
This took about 30 minutes to read and didn't seem like much more than Wikipedia summaries of his list of heroes. As a personal project that you do for your son, it's great. As a book that you sell for real money it's kind of a disappointment.
Bernice Seward
Aug 01, 2015 Bernice Seward rated it it was amazing
Though relatively small in size, this book is definitely NOT small in impact.

In Heroes for My Son, Brad Meltzer made a list of 52 heroes--from famous historical people to not-so-famous-ones--and shared about their impact on the world.

What I appreciated most about this book was the impact that each person had on the world around them, "just" because they followed a passion or a conviction that they had and lived it out. It's a reminder that each one of us counts, and that pursuing our passions or
Aug 01, 2012 Shea rated it liked it
I decided to read this after I read "Heroes for My Daughter," and after hearing this was book was being turned into a TV show. While I enjoyed this book, I found that I liked Meltzer's other book, Heroes for My Daughter, a lot better. Whether or not it's because I'm a female and therefore might relate or identify better with the "Daughter" book, I'm not sure. But, I do feel like the other book was more inspired and I liked the people he wrote about more.
With that being said, I love Meltzer's wri
Jul 31, 2014 Lee rated it it was amazing
It started out as a bargain bin buy. However, after reading about the Growth Mindset I needed validation that perseverance, hard work, and failure led to success. Brad Meltzer proves this through his inspiring book of all kinds of people: ordinary, famous, professional athletes, icons, etc.

This is the perfect pairing to the book Mindset By Carol Dweck. It will give you a ton of more examples of what the Growth Mindset looks like.
Dec 15, 2014 Jaime rated it it was ok
This is a sweet idea and I was introduced to several heroes I had never heard of before. I will seek out more stories on those lesser-known heroes, thanks to Meltzer. It's a coffee table kind of book and the writing was cheesy. I'm not sure at what age this book could interest my son. A different format and cover would certainly help. But the sentiment is there and the quotes were my favorite part.
Aug 31, 2015 Diana rated it really liked it
Thought this was an interesting little book. Brad Meltzer wrote it for his son. Describes some of his own heroes, has a picture of the person and usually a quote or two from the person. The people are a broad representation of life.
After reading this it is interesting to think......who would you chose as your heroes?
Sep 25, 2014 Kathy rated it really liked it
I loved this book! I especially enjoyed the "not so famous" heroes...Norman Borlaug, Frank Shankwitz, Barbara well as the. "famous"...George Washington, Mother Teresa, Roberto Clemente. I only wish the book was longer with more detailed biographies.
Marsha Hansen
Jun 11, 2014 Marsha Hansen rated it it was amazing
I am in love with this book...every aspect of this book.It is a book to be shared. Though written for his son, Brad Meltzer's collection of heroes will be inspiring for girls as well. This is a warm and wonderful book full of wisdom.
Dec 02, 2015 Kelly rated it it was amazing
Love this book.and his Heroes for My Daughter as well. Only 2 pages per subject, Meltzer provides a brief snippet of a person's life that he hopes his son will emulate, learn from, admire. This is a great feel good book.
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Brad Meltzer is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Inner Circle, The Book of Fate, and seven other bestselling thrillers. In addition to his fiction, Brad is one of the only authors to ever have books on the bestseller list for nonfiction (History Decoded), advice (Heroes for My Son and Heroes for My Daughter), children's books (I Am Amelia Earhart and I Am Abraham Lincoln) and even g ...more
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