Review sponsored* by Jennifer and Paul Norman
The Children’s Book Review | May 17, 2016
Written by Jennifer & Paul Norman
Illustrated by Victor Lodevico
Introduction by Sharon Buchalter
Hardcover: 56 pages
Age Range: 3-8
Publisher: Baldhead Man productions, INC. (2016)
What to expect: Superheroes, Acceptance, Compassion, Friendship
The Adventures of SuperCaptainBraveMan: A Day at the Park is the first title in a brand new picture book series that encourages kids to be inclusive and accept each other’s differences. The authors’ son Kyle is the inspiration behind the series.
Readers are introduced to Kyle, a smart young boy with a big heart. Just like all young kids, he enjoys going to the park, playing with bubbles, being read to at bedtime, and, just like many, Kyle also has a special bond with his dog Mochi. The authors explain that Kyle’s body does not make as much energy as other kids his age and that he has extra special equipment to help him through the day. The subsequent pages describe these special items, including a wheel chair and ventilator.
Kyle has a wonderful connection with his nurse, Brigette, who is with him from morning to night. When Brigette and Kyle begin playing with bubbles at the park, the other kids that are there playing notice the bubbles, but are too shy to come over to Kyle in his wheelchair. While sleeping, Kyle has dreams that he does not need his special items to get through the day, instead he has superpowers: he becomes SuperCaptainBraveMan and he can do anything without getting tired or feeling afraid. And when Kyle is SuperCaptainBraveMan every child is included and he helps kids find games that everyone can play—even kids in wheelchairs.
This is a great double-edged story. On one hand it is an empowering tale for children with special needs: “You can do amazing things if you decide to try.” On the other hand, it encourages all children to learn how to be compassionate and inclusive. The storytelling is clear and sweet and does a fine job depicting Kyle’s life and creating interest and understanding. The cartoon illustrations have been created by Kyle’s real-life nurse-turned-digital-artist Victor Lodevico. They provide pop and energy in the right places and really give Kyle an inner superhero spark, even when he is not in costume.
The Adventures of SuperCaptainBraveMan: A Day at the Park is a great choice for group reading in an educational setting. The more children that are touched with the message of acceptance and appreciation for children and adults with all kinds of differences, the better off the world will be. A fist bump goes to the entire team that worked on this book. We think the idea behind this new series deserves a wide audience, but even if this book only resonated with one young reader, they would have already made a difference.
Add this book to your collection: The Adventures of SuperCaptainBraveMan: Book One: A Day at the Park
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About Jennifer Norman
Adopted at the age of two into a bustling family that would ultimately include six children (three natural and three adopted), Jennifer learned early on that a life filled with love and opportunity is a precious gift that should not be taken for granted.
Like most parents, having a child gave Jennifer’s life a whole new sense of purpose. But when her son Kyle suddenly began showing signs of chronic illness at the tender age of two, that purpose changed from raising a ‘normal’, healthy child to fighting for her child’s life.
After attending Virginia Tech, receiving an MBA from Georgetown University and building a successful career in marketing for more than 20 years, Jennifer now devotes her time to writing and promoting the SuperCaptainBraveMan series as a way to educate youth on empathy, compassion and friendship to kids with a diverse range of health issues, so that all children can grow up feeling as loved and as special as they deserve.
About Paul Norman
Born and raised in Bronx, NY to a Puerto Rican mom and an African American dad, Paul was instilled with values of diversity appreciation, education and self-reliance from an early age. Paul accelerated in his studies, graduating from high school at the age of sixteen then obtaining a degree in Visual & Media Arts from Emerson College.
Paul moved from New York to Los Angeles to embark on a successful career as a First Assistant Director. His first wife gave birth to a healthy daughter, Honour, who he loves more than life itself.
After his second child, Kyle, was diagnosed with a rare, incurable genetic disorder, Paul refused to accept that his son would not survive. He fought battle after battle, advocating for Kyle’s care, seeking medical expertise wherever it could be found, committing himself to Kyle’s recovery.
Paul conceived the idea for a SuperCaptainBraveMan book upon being inspired by Kyle’s nurse, Victor, who would often sketch pictures of Kyle as a happy, healthy, active boy. Truly, that was how those close to Kyle often envisioned him.
About Victor Lodevico
Victor Lodevico is a Los Angeles based digital artist, Kyle’s nurse and best friend.
In 2009, upon receiving his Vocational Nursing license, Victor was assigned to Kyle Norman’s case, and the two created an instant bond. Victor saw first hand the impact that disease can have on a young child’s body. Though Kyle’s physical abilities would wane, Victor felt the joy and strength of Kyle’s inner spirit, so much so that Victor began to sketch pictures showcasing Kyle in settings appropriate of a little boy — images that portrayed Kyle through Victor’s eyes. He even nicknamed Kyle ‘SuperCaptainBraveMan.’
Victor was ecstatic when Kyle’s parents, Paul and Jennifer, approached him with the idea of partnering to develop a children’s picture book series inspired by Kyle and the SuperCaptainBraveMan character.
The Adventures of SuperCaptainBraveMan is Victor’s first illustrated children’s book. Victor is also the self-published author of the young adult/coming of age novel, The Memories That Break Our Fall.
Dedicated Reviews allow authors and illustrators to gain prompt visibility for their work. The authors of “The Adventures of SuperCaptainBraveMan: A Day at the Park,” Jennifer and Paul Norman, sponsored* this non-biased review. Learn more about getting a book review …