4 out of 4 stars
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Nowadays, the term superhero is associated with costumes, super powers and a threat to the human race. Those heroes only exist in movies and comic books. However, books such as Toni the Superhero written by R.D. Base are giving a new definition for the word superhero.
This Children’s book revolves around Toni, a young superhero. Instead of focusing on his magical powers, the book follows Toni throughout several “normal” activities. We can see him helping his mother, doing chores around the house, rescuing a cat, eating his vegetables, reading, and even playing with his friends!
The book is written in a simple style; It is easy to read. It is suited for children beginning to learn the English language; In my opinion, it is a perfect book for a quick bedtime story. Each page contains a short sentence. This same sentence is repeated with only the ending changing, thus describing different actions. Those short, repetitive sentences do not confuse the young reader, and they help him or her to focus on the new verb he or she is learning. In addition, they are accompanied by drawings that often cover two pages. The illustrations help to understand the described activity. And they can clearly be understood without reading the accompanying words.
A superhero is a great choice for the main character, I think that it really catches the attention of children. It doesn’t matter if they are girls or boys, this book is suited for both. Superheroes are perceived as role models; most children will look up to them. By showing Toni doing regular chores and activities, R.D. Base is teaching young children good morals and values. Children will find themselves relating to the tasks Toni is doing.
I haven’t read a children’s book in a long time, and it is my first time reviewing one. At first, I thought that it was a silly book, rather useless. But then, I tried to read it again with a child’s eyes. That’s when I found many benefits to reading this story: Toni is a good example to children, he assists his mom in domestic work, he likes to help animals, he eats well, and has a good time in the playground. He reminds us that superheroes exist. They do not always have special powers, but if we look really well we can see them. Each and every one of us can be a hero by being a decent human being.
I really liked the fact that Toni does not use his powers throughout the whole book. When he plays with his friends, even though he is wearing his superhero costume, he follows the same rules. This makes him even more relatable. Moreover, Toni is dark skinned, we do not encounter a lot of dark skinned heroes, so it is a nice change especially in a children's book. Plus, parents do not want to read meaningless books to their children, they want books packed with good morals and lessons; Toni the Superhero is one of them.
The colors that are used in the illustrations are vivid and attractive, although the drawings can get better. As an architecture student I couldn’t help but notice that some drawings were out of proportion and drawn at an impossible angle. Nonetheless, I rate this book 4 out of 4 stars. I did not find any spelling mistakes, the plot of the story is clear, easy to grasp. I am glad I have added Toni the Superhero to my library, it is definitely a book that I would recommend to new parents.
Toni the Superhero
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