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My brother is a superhero

New York, New York : Viking, an imprint of Penguin Group (USA), [2015]
Physical Description:
290 pages ; 22 cm
Number in series:
Eleven-year-old Luke, a hardcore fan of comics and superheroes, is jealous when his undeserving older brother Zack is zapped by an alien and turned into a superhero, until a plot to destroy the Earth incapacitates Zack, and Luke, accompanied by Lara, the nosey girl next door, must come to the rescue.


Call Number
J Solomons, D.

On Order



Behind every great superhero is a very angry younger brother.

Luke Parker was just your average comic book fan until his boring, teacher's pet, helps-old-ladies-across-the-street brother Zack got turned into a superhero. Luke can't believe the unfairness of it all-- he's the one with the encyclopedic knowledge of everything from Ant-Man to Wolverine! At least he can help Zack--aka Star Guy--with all the important parts of becoming a superhero, like using his newfound powers and deciding whether or not to wear a cape.

But when Star Guy gets into super-size trouble, it's up to Luke--and his intrepid neighbor, Lara--to rescue his big brother and, with a little luck, help him save the world.

Author Notes

David Solomons was born in Glasgow in 1969. He is a screenwriter. His first feature film was an adaptation of 'Five Children and It.' He is also an author. His first novel for children was My Brother is a Superhero. It was the winner of the Waterstones Children's Book Prize and the 2016 British Book Industry Awards Children's Book of the Year. My Gym Teacher Is an Alien Overlord is the sequel, published in June 2016.

(Bowker Author Biography)

Reviews 4

School Library Journal Review

Gr 4-6-It was just plain bad luck (he had to pee) that 11-year-old superhero-loving Luke wasn't present when the spaceship hovered next to the tree house and the alien turned his 15-year-old studious brother, Zack, into a real superhero. Zorlon gave Zack three glowing stars on his chest, six unnamed powers, and a warning, "Nemesis is coming." Luke is jealous and furious that he wasn't chosen. His brother knows nothing about being a superhero-he won't even wear a cape! Now it's up to Luke to teach Zack, aka Super Guy, how to act like a superhero, to help him discover his powers, and to find out who or what Nemesis is, all while keeping Zack's new identity a secret. This becomes harder than just keeping his mouth shut as their nosy neighbor, Lara, is determined that she and Luke will discover Super Guy's true identity. Throw in Zach's crush on Lara's older sister, trying to be a superhero while keeping your parents clueless, being kidnapped by a fiendish comic book store owner while trying to save the world, and you're got a non-stop action-packed, laugh-out-loud winner of a story. The main characters are finely drawn and their voices are authentic. The format of the book with its font size and generous white space make it accessible and appealing. VERDICT A great book that will charm reluctant readers as well as anyone who has ever dreamed of being a superhero. It also makes for a fun read-aloud.-Nancy P. Reeder, Heathwood Hall Episcopal School, Columbia, SC © Copyright 2015. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Publisher's Weekly Review

Eleven-year-old Luke is a huge comic-book fan, so when an ill-timed bathroom break results in his 14-year-old brother, Zack, receiving superpowers from a visiting alien (instead of Luke himself), he is understandably upset. But Zack-whose brand of nerdiness only extends to math, not comics-needs help navigating his new identity as Star Guy. Comic-book devotees like Luke will appreciate references to familiar characters (Zack initially christens himself Starman until Luke reminds him, "There's already a Starman. You'll probably get sued"), but all readers will enjoy the deadpan narration that reveals the unexpected difficulties of being a modern-day superhero-like getting to a crime scene when you're too young to drive. When Luke's classmate Lara decides to unmask Star Guy, Luke tries to stop her, but the real danger is the villainous Nemesis, a threat to not one but two universes. In his first children's book, screenwriter Solomons demonstrates that he's equally at home with high-octane comic-book action and more ordinary topics like the pain of being overshadowed by an older sibling, superpowered or otherwise. Ages 8-12. (July) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Horn Book Review

After an alien grants superpowers to his older brother, Zack, eleven-year-old comic-book fan Luke has to teach this clueless new superhero the ropes. When Zack is kidnapped, Luke teams up with his friends to rescue his brother before a rogue asteroid destroys Earth. Despite broad characterization and an undemanding plot, this comedic adventure is a diverting middle-grade read. (c) Copyright 2016. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Kirkus Review

When his older brother is suddenly gifted with superpowers, a comics aficionado must swallow his pride and coach him as best he can. One night, while hanging with his older brother, Zack, in the family treehouse, 11-year-old Luke Parker excuses himself to use the bathroom. In the five minutes he's gone an extradimensional being named Zorbon the Decider has visited Zack and given him both superpowers and a dire warning: "Nemesis is coming." Luke, a comics-obsessed uber-dork, believes these powers would better suit him than his academically gifted older brother, but jealousy is quickly set aside in order to train Zack as Star Guy ("There's already a Starman. You'll probably get sued," Luke humorously informs Zack), the world's first real superhero. The ensuing novel is a loving tribute to the genre consumed with capes, masks, supervillains, and great responsibility. The author never veers into mockery of the shoulders this story stands upon, nor is there any disrespect leveled at either brother. These kids are painted with broad strokes at first, but as the story goes on, each is given a second layer that anyone with a sibling will recognize. The true identity of Nemesis is unfortunately bungled, tripping up the novel in the end. Seeds are planted for a sequel, though, and few readers will be able to resist joining Star Guy on his next adventure. As genuinely open-hearted as the genre that inspired it. (Adventure. 10-16) Copyright Kirkus Reviews, used with permission.