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Friday, August 26, 2011

Review: We Can Be Heroes by Catherine Bruton

I still remember that night when I woke up and my mom was staring at the TV in shock. That was September 11, the day of the 9/11 bombing in the U.S. I think that will be forever etched in my mind, so a book written inspired by the 9/11 events will never go unnoticed by me.

Title: We Can Be Heroes by Catherine Bruton
Pages: 400
Release Date: August 1st 2011
Published by: Egmont Books Ltd
Source: Publisher (thanks Vicki!)
Buy: Amazon | Book Depository

Summary (from Goodreads):

My dad was killed in the 9/11 attacks in New York. But the stuff in this book isn’t about that. It’s about the summer me and Jed and Priti tried to catch a suicide bomber and started a riot.

There’s stuff about how we built a tree house and joined the bomb squad; how I found my dad and Jed lost his; and how we both lost our mums then found them again.

So it’s not really about 9/11 but then again none of those things would have happened if it hadn’t been for that day.

So I guess it’s all back to front, sort of …

A lot of families lost their loved ones that day of the terrorist attack, like 12 year old Ben. True to the summary, this book isn't just about that, but of Ben and his friends Preeti and Jed and what happened to them that summer.

Ben is a kid you would just like to hug, a kid you couldn't help but love. He was afraid to grieve for his parents because people will think he's being overly dramatic. And for a 12 year old to think of that just breaks my heart. And the hardships he has faced dealing with his mom's eating habits, that's a lot for a 12 year old who has also lost a father to take. Also, Preeti is so funny! She sounds very intelligent for an 11 year old, and I love how she always babbles, saying she's just trying to help cousins get rid of their emotional baggages. How can an 11 year old say that?

I loved this book for a number of reasons. I was first skeptical when I first read that this is appeals to younger audiences, but I am glad I gave this a chance. Even with the MG feel of the book, readers will be able to relate to it in some ways. I feel like I'm seeing a younger version of myself through Ben, Jed and Preeti. How I had fun when I was young, with a very active imagination! Also, I love how hilarious this is. I've had quite a good laugh while I was reading this book. As if that isn't enough, there's also a very cute carton illustration in the end, which made the book more enjoyable than it already is.

We Can Be Heroes is not just all about fun. It also tackles issues like racism, through the eyes of children like Ben, Jed and Preeti. It's also about family, dealing with loss and grief, done in a very entertaining way. It was evident that Catherine Bruton knew what she was writing about with the way she presented sensitive issues and topics in this book. It tackled stereotypes, races, terrorism in a very good way.

We Can Be Heroes made me feel like a kid again, made me look back at those times and reflect on how good those times were. It also made me appreciate my family in a lot of ways, and seeing the friendship formed between all three children was so heart warming, that even when times were difficult they can still have fun. Set aside a few hours of your time and give this book a chance, will you?

Content (plot, story flow, character):

Shining: Worthy of a Goddess' Love!

Book Cover:


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