Life as a Mini Hero

by Olivier Tallec (Author)

Life as a Mini Hero
Reading Level: K − 1st Grade
Clad in bright suits that bespeak their daring deeds, these mini heroes live their daily lives assailed by all sorts of difficulty and disaster. Whether jumping rope on the playground, eating towers of ice-cream, or hanging upside-down from the ceiling, they are never short of plans and prospects! Sometimes, it's true, they have to pause, which may be the greatest challenge of all.

Kirkus Reviews

Required reading for any prospective dark knights or superheroes.

School Library Journal

K-Gr 2--Being a mini superhero is not as exciting or glamorous as one might think. It involves a lot of waiting, for one, and there are never enough adoring fans. Nevertheless, mini heroes do what they can to make the most of things. They wear their mini hero suits and faces each day, trying to be brave and confident even when they are feeling the opposite. It becomes frustrating when their mini hero ways are misunderstood or ill-appreciated, but that does not deter them from continuing to express themselves. Short, emphatic phrases fill this book, often causing a stark contrast between the text and the illustrations. For young children unfamiliar with this literary device, this book is a humorous introduction to it. The illustrations, created in pencil with select splotches of color, are wonderfully entertaining. Though two dimensional, they are spot-on in their depiction of both movement and emotion. Readers will no doubt recognize the feelings these mini heroes experience as reflections of moments in their own lives. Translated from the French, the text often utilizes challenging and unfamiliar vocabulary, which will inspire dialogue between the children reading this book and their caregivers. VERDICT This is a delightful read for families with their own mini hero as they navigate the turbulent emotions that often accompany such an active imagination.--Mary Lanni, formerly of Denver Public Library

Copyright 2019 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Publishers Weekly

Part field guide to children, part instruction manual for caretakers, this minimalist volume emphasizes the daily drudgery inherent in even a heroic child's life, including trips to the eye doctor and dentist, and the tedium of tidying. Thoughout, pint-size heroes clad in unbranded superhero uniforms demonstrate some of the challenges of childhood (a young Spider-Man ignores a droning friend; a small Wonder Woman expertly twirls a lasso, much to her friends' annoyance). "Mini Hereos are far too busy to ever get bored.../...except sometimes when it rains," Tallec writes, as a child sits dully in front of the television. Extending the sparse sentences' humor and meaning, expressive pencil and spot color illustrations sometimes counter a stated point, as when a scowling superchild helps another child skip rope: "Mini Heroes love to be of service. This is what distinguishes them." Tallec (What If...) captures the pain of a child's world with wit and reassurance, while providing a gentle reminder to grown-up sidekicks, who "often forget that Mini Heroes can be really slow because of the many traps they have to avoid, the number of rivers they have to cross, and the many buildings they have to climb." Ages 4-8. (Aug.)

Copyright 2019 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

★ "When I was reading this book, I just kept thinking how Olivier Tallec really seemed to get into the mind of a young child — how their world is one big adventure of many experiences that adults sometimes do not understand...The illustrations are perfect [and] the expressions on the young mini heroes are priceless!" —STARRED REVIEW, Kristin Guay, Youth Services Book Review
Olivier Tallec

The work of Olivier Tallec has been described as sensitive stunning, breathtaking, and beautiful. Tallec was born in Brittany, France, in 1970. After graduating from the École Supérieure d'Art Graphique in Paris, he worked in advertising as a graphic designer, after which he devoted himself to illustration. Since then he has illustrated more than sixty books, a dozen of which have been published by Enchanted Lion.

Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Publication date
August 20, 2019

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