Hero Type by Barry Lyga

Kevin is a hero.  He saved a popular girl, Leah, from getting raped and murdered, and if that wasn’t good enough, the person he saved her from is a serial killer.  So, Kevin went from a fool that tried to not really get noticed to the center of attention.  In school, everyone wants to be his friend and sit next to him.  He is even given a pretty good deal on a car from the mayor of the town, who also owns the car dealership.  Only, Kevin doesn’t feel like a hero.  Actually, he is keeping a secret that makes him feel worse every time his heroism is brought up.  To make matters worse, a local reporter catches him throwing away two magnetic patriotic ribbons off of the back of his car when Kevin’s father tells him to.  This reporter turns Kevin into a villain.  Kevin is all of a sudden everyone’s enemy because they believe that he is not patriotic.  Instead of coming clean and just saying that his dad made him do it, Kevin takes hold of this new image and brings about a debate about free speech.  Not only does Kevin have to deal with this new villain treatment, but he also has to deal with the secret that he is keeping, and his mom wants him to move to California away from his dad.

I usually like Barry Lyga, but I just did not get into this book.  There were too many issues that were happening at one time and I don’t believe that any of them were written well enough for me to grip onto and struggle through with the main character.  Lyga may have shared what was going on, but it was not done in a way that I cared about.  I think part of the problem is that I just never really cared about Kevin.  I could relate to him from time to time, but he wasn’t a character that I liked.  The challenges that Kevin goes through in order to find his identity and what is important to him are not gripping.  The secret that he struggles with is easy to figure out within a few pages of the story and it probably turns me off to the character as a whole.  All in all, I really think that Lyga was trying to do too much with this novel and because of that he barely scratches the surface of each topic making this book shallow and not worth the extended amount of time it took me to read it.

I gave it a 2/5 stars.  I finished it and it was written by a great author, but I don’t recommend it and I would not read it again.

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