Boys of Steel by Marc Tyler Nobleman

Boys of Steel

JERRY SIEGEL AND Joe Shuster, two misfit teens in Depression-era Cleveland, were more like Clark Kent—meek, mild, and myopic—than his secret identity, Superman. Both boys escaped into the worlds of science fiction and pulp magazine adventure tales. Jerry wrote stories, and Joe illustrated them. In 1934, they created a superhero who was everything they were not. It was four more years before they convinced a publisher to take a chance on their...

Details Boys of Steel

TitleBoys of Steel
Release DateJul 22nd, 2008
PublisherKnopf Books for Young Readers
GenreBiography, Childrens, Picture Books, Nonfiction, History, Sequential Art, Comics

Reviews Boys of Steel

  • Sam Quixote
    Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster were teenagers when they created the world’s first – and greatest – superhero, and then sold the rights to Superman to the company that would become DC Comics for a measly $130! Marc Tyler Nobleman and Ross MacDonald’s short picture book – at 26 oversize pages with a large paragraph or two per page, it definitely feels aimed at educating younger readers – succinctly recounts Siegel and Shuster’s lives up...
  • Leanne
    I tend to be confused by picture books that lots of text. I guess they are meant for older readers, but they are a weird mix to me. This particular story is about the creators of Superman, and while I found this true story interesting, I was most intrigued by the two-page afterward. And there you have it--too many details for a picture book, but not enough details for more mature readers. I tried these type of books on reluctant 6th and 7th-grade...
  • Jtroby
    Boys of Steel is a biography written about the creators of Superman: Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. As teenagers growing up in Cleveland during the Great Depression, they did not fit in with all the other kids who were into sports and girls. Instead, they spent most of their time writing and drawing science fiction stories. After one attempt, the boys got frustrated and thought they would never make it in the cartoon world. Then, laying in his bed...
  • Earl
    A fascinating look at the creators of a legendary character. Two boys who were more Clark Kent than Superman follow their passion of creating action packed stories. While some weren't runaway hits, they persevered until they hit the big time with their caped crusader. And, even then, they suffered lots of struggles- the biggest of which was ensuring they were credited- and paid- for their creation!
  • Jon(athan) Nakapalau
    Great introduction to Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster.
  • Ben Truong
    Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman is part biography and part comic of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster – the co-creators of Superman, and written by Marc Tyler Nobleman and illustrated by Ross MacDonald.Jerome "Jerry" Siegel was an American writer of superhero comics and is best known to be the co-creator of Superman. Joseph "Joe" Shuster was a Canadian-American comic book artist best known for co-creating The Man of Steel.As an aside: I am t...
  • Betsy
    Time was when a comic book wouldn’t have had a snowball’s chance in Hades of getting into a library’s collection. And while some library systems have grown more open to the notion of comic book heroes leaping about their hallowed halls, there’s still a great deal of resistance to the idea. Now Marc Tyler Nobleman and Ross MacDonald have found another way to get a fella like Superman into a library, and it’s definitely a slick idea. Unti...
  • Charlie Hersh
    Nice narrative but Nobleman didn't mention Moses or any Jewish aspects to Superman at all, except for a brief note about Superman's Kryptonian name (Kal-El) in the concluding essay. The struggle to distinguish Superman from other superheroes, as well as the hope and strength he brought to Shuster and Spiegel, is brought into an entirely new and, honestly, more interesting light when you see the parallels between Superman and this central Jewish h...
  • Traci
    Who truly created Superman? I know DC Comics own the rights but they did not come up with the character. Now I know the answer to my question which to me darkens DC Comics. #JoeShuster and #JerrySiegel are the creators of the original comics and are finally, after decades, given credit for it in all that is Superman. But how did they come up with this iconic superhero who is not human? Read BOYS OF STEEL , THE CREATORS OF SUPERMAN to find out. Wr...
  • Lauren Hicks
    I thoroughly enjoyed this story! It is a non-fiction picture book about the creators of Superman and how they came up with the concept. I love that the story doesn't shy away from the struggles they had! I think kids can relate to that. It also shows that you can find inspiration anywhere, and if you keep at your dream, it can come true!
  • Concetta Kellough
    Great book about the two high school friends who went on to create Superman. The epilogue at the end is sad to read. It tells how DC Comics morally (though not legally) screwed the creators by not fairly compensating them many years.
  • Laura
    The main text of this book was interesting, but I found the author's note at the end especially intriguing.
  • Susan Morris
    What an amazing, true story of the creators of Superman! I heard the author speak at a librarians’ conference, and he does an amazing amount of research for his books. (Library)
  • EagleRose
    This was rather sad in how it turned out but still a well written and well illustrated story for children about the two young men who put their talents together and are still affecting the world.
  • Laura Hoyler
    Great story- and the students at my school were completely enthralled with Marc Nobleman when he came to speak. Nice to know the truth behind the superhero!
  • Shel
    Nobleman, M. (2008). Boys of Steel: The creators of Superman. New York: Alfred A. Knopf.9780375838026Appetizer: This picturebook explores the biographies of Superman creators Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. The story begins while Siegel was still in high school, so he'll be a relatable child-like character (although a bit older than the intended readers). The book shares about their friendship and later partnership as they came up with the idea for...
  • Trudy Zufelt
    Here is my book review as appeared on my blog,"It's a bird! It's a plane! It's Siegel and Shuster!"When two depression-era teenagers, Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel, weren't reading about heroes like Tarzan and Flash Gordon, they were dreaming of creating their own superheroes. Too shy to interact with those in the real world, the two friends immersed themselves into their writing and drawing. While everybody else ignored...
  • Allison Parker
    Jerry and Joe are best friends. They both feel like outsiders in high school; they’d much rather read the stories about amazing characters in comic strips than play ball outside. Soon, they start working on their own comic strips: Jerry writes stories, while Joe draws the characters. They dream of having their own strip in a newspaper. Jerry has the idea of a new hero, one who has the superpowers Jerry wishes he had. Joe draws a man as strong a...
  • Tasha
    This is the gripping and fascinating true story of the creation of Superman. Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster were high school students in Cleveland during the Depression. Jerry was a writer, who loved adventure and science fiction. Joe loved to draw and illustrated many of Jerry's stories. Together in 1934, they created Superman, a hero who was also as shy and reserved as both of them were. For three years they tried to sell Superman to publishers. ...
  • Bruce
    It might be called the revenge of the nerds. One of Jerry Siegel’s teachers told the Cleveland teenager that the fantastic adventure stories he wrote were trash. His only friend in high school was Joe Shuster, who shared his love of science fiction and adventure. But while Jerry typed his stories, Joe drew his two-fisted heroes. Together they hoped they could create a comic strip and sell it to a newspaper.One night Jerry had an idea. What if, ...
  • Emma
    Boys of Steel: The Creators of SupermanBy Marc Tyler NoblemanThe book Boys of Steel tells the story of the creators of superman. The author does a very good job of making the characters come together and show the reader how they work together. For example one character is the one who writes the superman stories and his partner draws all the pictures; the author does an amazing job at showing their relationship of growing up together creating thes...
  • Susan
    Excellent children's picturebook biography of mild and meek Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, creators of Superman. With retro-style art, the story begins with their solitary days in high school before they met - Jerry would isolate himself reading comics and writing science fiction stories in his attic while Joe would occupy his time drawing. The two, who could almost be mistaken for brothers, meet in their Cleveland high school and they become frie...
  • Justin G
    I don't normally like biographies but this is one for all the kids who like superheroes. This book has a good premise about the two kids (who were best friends) who invented Superman when they were in their teens during the Great Depression. They made a great team. They were disappointed that their first title didn't make it into the magazines. Superman jumped in there when one of the boys had a dream about a superhero who is an alien. He's not a...
  • David
    This book plays directly into the sense of fairness and justice found in an 8 year old boy. The story of Superman is the story of two young men and a dream during the soul crushing years of the Great Depression. They came up with an idea for a character quite unlike the popular characters in books, and they set him in the world they knew where real injustice and crime seemed to flourish on every street corner. My 8 year old grandson's first remar...
  • M.
    2011 Bluestem nominee. A historical nonfiction book written for roughly ages 8-11, probably more aimed at boys. Set during the Great Depression, roughly 1930 through 1938. Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster weren't athletic or popular in high school. Jerry spent his free time writing adventure stories and Joe spent his time illustrating Jerry's stories, but the stories were always about ordinary, but heroic, men who find themselves in extrodinary place...
  • Debbie
    Boys of Steel is aimed at a young audience, but the artwork in it allows for the reader to see the relationship between Clark Kent/Superman and the creators of his character, Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster. The story is firmly set in the Depression and the years after it, which really allowed for such a fantastical character to be so readily embraced in the American culture. My favorite part, though, is the afterward, which included information abo...
  • Tatiana
    This book soars when telling the quiet story of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, the "Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman." These two guys were the forerunners of silent, nerdy, fanboys who daydreamed of superheroes instead of focusing on school, or being aware that girls paid them no mind. These two slowly brought to life the amazing Superman, but not before facing a whole lot of rejection in the midst of the Great Depression. But their tenacit...
  • Angela
    As a mother and wife of comic book and superhero fans, this true, behind-the-scenes story of how Joe and Jerry came to the great idea of one of the most beloved heroes of all time was really quite fascinating!This is not an origin story of Superman, nor is it really about Superman, but rather it's a story about two young men who stuck with their passions and interests and worked together when no one else was even interested. I never knew that thi...
  • Aaron
    This was a fun little picture book biography of Joe Shuster and Jerry Siegel. It is a quick read, but provides a quick look into their lives. Both were Jewish and grew up in poverty during the Depression only to use those experiences to create what is probably the greatest comic book icon ever: Superman. The most unfortunate part of their story is that for a good portion of the time, they were not really recognized as the co-creators and received...
  • Brandi
    This is the story of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, who created Superman. They met while they were in high school during the Great Depression in the 1930’s. They were very similar in looks as well as in personality. Jerry and Joe would read books and comics and watch movies about superheroes. Jerry would write about them, and Joe would draw them. In winter, Joe’s house didn’t have heat, and he would draw in layers of clothing, including a co...