Wedgieman: A Hero Is Born

Wedgieman: A Hero Is Born

by Charise Mericle Harper, Bob Shea
     
 

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In The Adventures of Wedgieman: A Hero Is Born, young readers will follow Veggiebaby from his humble beginnings on his journey to becoming Veggieman. Um, make that Wedgieman, since that's what the kids in the neighborhood all call him. Let's face it—children aren't the best spellers and, well, wedgies are a lot cooler than veggies!

But it's not

Overview

In The Adventures of Wedgieman: A Hero Is Born, young readers will follow Veggiebaby from his humble beginnings on his journey to becoming Veggieman. Um, make that Wedgieman, since that's what the kids in the neighborhood all call him. Let's face it—children aren't the best spellers and, well, wedgies are a lot cooler than veggies!

But it's not all cauliflower and carrot sticks—Wedgieman has to fight some pretty bad dudes in his work as a superhero, yet the one battle he can't seem to win is the one over his superhero name. 

Brought vividly to life by Bob Shea's graphic and stylish illustrations, The Adventures of Wedgieman blends Charise Mericle Harper's outlandish humor with tongue-in-cheek action that will delight young readers.The Adventures of Wedgieman: A Hero Is Born is the first book in the series, and two more are on the way!

Editorial Reviews

Kirkus Reviews
Captain Underpants he ain't. Although some may initially associate Harper and Shea's beginning reader with Pilkey's popular series, it falls short with a thin story and none of the master's clever sense of subversive, ribald humor. The titular hero starts as Veggiebaby, then becomes Veggieboy, then Veggieman, his growth and development attributed to his love of vegetables. He practices his superpowers as he grows, with text and art taking cheap shots at elderly women (as he lifts "a bus filled with chattering grandmas") and overweight people (as his X-ray vision enables him to see into a house where a rotund man stands, embarrassed and clad only in his underwear: "Some things are better not seen.") The book ends with Veggieman getting a new name from children who see a stick stuck to his shirt, making the V into a W, and dub him Wedgieman. "We don't care about spelling," they assure him when he objects that the word "wedgie" has a "d" and not a double "g." His new name is sealed when (in an odd turn of events that is, sadly, characteristic of the poorly executed text) he gives himself a wedgie. In what seems like a veritable golden age of beginning readers, perhaps some things are better not published. Or read. (Early reader. 5-7)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
The message about eating vegetables is couched in the story of how Veggieman became Wedgieman. It starts with the birth of Veggiebaby who grew stronger every day because he ate all of his vegetables. However, he disobeyed the instruction not to play with his food. He would create broccoli bears, tomato tigers, and spinach spiders. As the years went on Veggiebaby grew into Veggieboy. He practiced flying, lifting heavy objects, and looking with his x-ray vision. He also had the ability to turn himself into a vegetable. As a young boy he spent time helping others and then one day he turned into Veggieman. One of his goals was to help the children of the world eat their veggies and be healthy. One day he saved a young boy and the children started cheering for him, but they kept calling him Wedgieman. Finally, the name stuck. This is a level 3 book in the "step into reading" series targeted for grades one through three. It challenges readers to tackle the difficult words on their own. The stories are characterized by engaging characters, easy-to-follow plots and popular topics. Reviewer: Marilyn Courtot
School Library Journal
K-Gr 2—In this "true" history of how a superhero named Veggieman became known as Wedgieman, Harper serves up a generous portion of humor that's sure to elicit giggles from the intended chapter-book audience. Veggiebaby progresses from a playful, bold vegetable-loving infant to a strong, scoutlike Veggieboy, and, finally, dressed in superhero regalia, he is Veggieman. In this final incarnation, he executes his most daring deed, rescuing a child stranded high in a tree. However, sticks from the tree adhere to his neon green shirt, making his "V" appear as a "W" and making way for the gag that drives the entire story. His young fans dub him Wedgieman, concluding this adventure and undoubtedly paving the way for subsequent ones. Parents will appreciate the healthy-eating pitch while children are eating up a nonsensical story that is perfect for newly independent readers.—Gloria Koster, West School, New Canaan, CT

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780307930712
Publisher:
Random House Children's Books
Publication date:
08/07/2012
Series:
Adventures of Wedgieman Series
Pages:
48
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.80(h) x 0.20(d)
Age Range:
5 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

CHARISE MERICLE HARPER has written and illustrated numerous children's books, including Just Grace; The Power of Cute; Gigi in the Big City; Milo's Special Words; Good Night, Leo; Pink Me Up; and When Randolph Turned Rotten. She lives in Mamaroneck, New York, with her husband and their two children.  Charise loves creating art and stories, petting her cat, drinking coffee, and eating pie. 

BOB SHEA is the author-illustrator of the award-winning and bestselling Dinosaur vs. Bedtime, as well as Oh, Daddy!New Socks, and I'm a Shark. He also wroteBig Plans, illustrated by Lane Smith. Bob lives in Connecticut with his family.

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