Finding Heroes for Myself

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

We are made up of our childhood dreams, our hard work now, and the goals of the future.
I first came across Brad Meltzer in an advertisement in Time magazine and in a corner, there was his biography: "Author of the bestselling book, Heroes For My Son".  Later, I saw his name again on Goodreads, and there was an ARC giveaway for his newest book, Heroes For My Daughter (out May 2012). I signed up immediately and to my surprise, I won a copy.

I was interested not because I was a parent. I was interested because the book seemed interesting. I'm saying that as a teenager. I'm picky when it comes to books and I find that I don't like a lot of books. A lot of it comes down to personal choice, but also comes down to the literary value. Is it written well? If not, there's a high chance that I probably won't like it.

Growing up, I never lacked inspirational books. When I was younger, I was interested in medicine, so my mom bought me a book filled with famous doctors and scientists in history. As I got older, my mom bought me stacks of Chicken Soup books. However, I never felt truly inspired. In Chicken Soup, normal people overcame obstacles. In the book filled with scientists and doctors, their work ethic was outlined. They were all so determined. So, so determined. I wasn't really inspired however.

Today, Heroes For My Daughter came via UPS and I was excited. The book is a little thinner than I expected, but the content makes up for it. In the introduction, Meltzer writes the reasons why he wrote the book, a little reminiscent of The Last Lecture, with the ideas that Meltzer wanted his daughter to take away.

This book is not a collection of biographies. It only gives a one or two sentence snippet of what the person did. There's a short anecdote about a particular time in his/her life, followed by a quote. It's the short anecdotes that inspired me. The people were portrayed as normal people with dreams and determination. They're not portrayed as people who are somewhat different than the rest of us. I liked that.

This is a book I wish I had when I was child. It's easy to read and filled with inspirational stories. I was most touched when the book was made a little more personal when I found out that Meltzer included his grandmother, his mother, and his wife. Sharing personal stories was a daring move, and it worked. I was left a little more inspired.

This is not just a book for your daughter, but rather for all girls (and even women)! I'm considering buying a copy for my young cousin and a young family friend. And because I read this, I'm considering buying Heroes for My Son, too. Let children (and everyone else) be inspired!



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