About the book
The Unlikely Heroics Of Sam Holloway is published by Wildfire (Headline Books) and is available from 31st May in digital form and 9th August in paperback.
Sam Holloway has survived the worst that life can throw at you. But he’s not really living. His meticulous routines keep everything nice and safe – with just one exception . . .
Three nights a week, Sam dons his superhero costume and patrols the streets. It makes him feel invincible – but his unlikely heroics are getting him into some sticky situations.
Then a girl comes along and starts to shatter the walls Sam has built around himself. Now, he needs to decide if he’s brave enough to take off the mask, and to confront the grief he’s been avoiding for so long . . .
I was instantly intrigued when I heard about The Unlikely Heroics Of Sam Holloway – it just sounded a little unusual to what’s out there – so I jumped at the chance of reading it and am most certainly glad I did. Wonderful feel-good fiction that we all need from time to time, and reminds us whats important in life.
Our main character, Sam Holloway, leads a life set in routine, whether it be his home life, work life or social life – he likes and needs simplicity. He’s a young man who’s a little geeky, a little old beyond his years, a little socially awkward, and other than his two equally geeky friends, he’s a bit of a loner. But he is completely loveable!
From a young age Sam has always felt a lot of loneliness – a young child with both parents always working and at school by not fitting in with the social hierarchy. So it was then when he first found his solace in comic books and would retreat to his Batcave. When the worst kind of tragedy strikes in his later life, he retreats even more into that world, and by creating his own costume he becomes his own kind of superhero, masking his own pain and trauma by patrolling his neighbourly streets and helping others in need. But then Sam falls for Sarah and he needs to decide if he can shed that mask, step out of his comfort zone, conquer the walls that have been hiding his grief and build new relationships…
What can I say? Sam captured my heart in every little way and I championed him right on throughout the story. You know how sometimes a character just instantly comes to life for you? Well this is what happened for me, I could, and still can so clearly picture what Sam looked like and all his little mannerisms and quirks. I also must mention how much I adored his friends! The moments himself, Blotchy and Tango were together were my personal highlights – just their simplicity and innocence of life and the world made me smile, there were not only incredibly heart-warming moments between them, but my goodness they also had me in stitches many a time (pushing the car and monopoly scenes are ones that have definitely stuck!)
Apart from the present day story of Sam meeting Sarah, this novel also goes back to Sam’s growing up years – we know Sam has suffered tragedy but the author slowly lets us uncover in what way. It’s hard for these parts not to completely tug at your heartstrings and see why he’s the way he is. It’s also laced with ‘The Phantasm’ chapters which are something rather unusual – being honest, something that wouldn’t usually appeal to me, but whether Sam is giving out words of advice to the youth of today or he’s chasing burglars – you see how it can make him feel better and feel like he’s doing something worthwhile, but more importantly it’s these chapters that let the reader really see the tragic soul under the mask and that’s why they work so well.
The Unlikely Heroics Of Sam Holloway is a novel about loss, loneliness and moving forwards, but it’s incredibly quirky, humorous, heart-warming and uplifting. The story reminds us of two important things. Firstly, not to judge people as you never really know what someone is dealing with beneath their own mask. And secondly, how a little bit of kindness and seeing the good in people can go a long way. Kindness is free and it’s time we had a little more in the world…
Many thanks go to Phoebe Swinburn at Headline who kindly provided me with an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest thoughts.
Than you for taking the time to read my review. If you like the sound of The Unlikely Heroics of Sam Holloway, please follow the links below to order.