A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this book.
Superhero fantasy meant to entertain.
Don't hold yourself back because of what might happen. Not knowing if you're making the right decision is what makes trying new things exciting. Go out and do the things you want to do, make mistakes, and make memories. Do them just because you can, because if you don't take opportunities when they arise, you might not get another chance to try.
Positive Role Models
Faith is optimistic and feels things deeply. She does well in school and works part-time at an animal shelter. She lives with her grandmother; they get along well, and Faith is helpful and responsible at home. She handles her grandmother's decline from dementia well, although it isn't easy. The friendship trio of Faith, Matt, and Ches are very loyal and supportive of one another. Faith is also a good model for perseverance. She won't stop until she gets to the bottom of things.
Faith and best friend Matt are great role models for body positivity. They identify as fat, but that doesn't define them. Faith is attracted to both boys and girls and falls in love with a girl. Matt identifies as gay and is in a romantic relationship. Their other best friend Ches identified in the first book as pansexual but isn't romantically involved in this volume. Faith is White. Other characters represent a variety of races or ethnicities.
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Violence & Scariness
Several superhero-type fights using powers like fire starting, flying, and a powerful, glass-shattering, ear-splitting scream. People slam into each other or throw each other into furniture and walls. A head is smashed with a cinderblock. A punch in the jaw with brass knuckles. Blood and pain are sometimes mentioned but not described in detail. A person under mind control chokes someone by lifting them off the ground by the throat. Fire power is used to start several minor fires and a major building fire with descriptions of smoke, choking, and trying to escape the fire.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Two romances between same-sex couples mention kissing and holding hands. One couple kiss and caress in bed a couple of times. Once it's clear that they don't have sex, and the other time sex is vaguely implied.
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Infrequent strong language includes "f--k," "s--t," "ass," and "badass."
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Products & Purchases
Occasional food and car brands, plus a couple of pop singers mentioned.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Julie Murphy's Faith: Greater Heights continues the superhero-origin story begun in Faith: Taking Flight. It begins soon after the events of the first book, so reading them in order is recommended to make understanding the characters and events easier. There are some superhero-type fights with fire, flight, and ear-splitting-scream powers. Someone's lifted off the ground by the throat, and characters run into each other at high speeds and throw each other into furniture and walls. Blood and pain are mentioned but not described in detail. Same-sex couples kiss and hold hands. One couple sleeps in the same bed -- once they fall asleep after brief kissing and caressing; the second time sex is vaguely implied. Strong language is rare but includes "f--k," "s--t," and "ass." Faith is an orphan who lives with her grandmother, so parental loss is a minor theme. A much stronger theme is her grandmother's gradual decline from dementia.
Is It Any Good?
This continuation of the entertaining superhero origin story teamimg popular author Julie Murphy with the Valiant Comics franchise keeps the fun and positivity going strong. Body size, sexual orientation, and good old-fashioned upbeat optimism make Faith: Greater Heights as refreshing and inclusive as the first volume. As with Faith: Taking Flight, some of the plot and the characters are pretty transparent. Some twists and turns are easier to spot than others, but they build to a large-scale confrontation toward the end that keep the pages turning. Fans of the first book will enjoy reuniting with some favorite old characters while being intruduced to mysterious new ones. Superhero fans and fans of Julie Murphy will enjoy the upbeat tone, action, and mystery without all the violence and brooding that define so many superhero stories.
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.