DiscoverMiddle Grade

My Dad, the Earth Warrior

By

Loved it! 😍

A sports-loving boy and his bookworm dad must overcome their differences to fight an evil energy tycoon in this eco-conscious debut.

Ever since his mum died two years ago, Hero Trough has clung to the idea of attending the World Cup. The thought of seeing his hometown’s star striker play in the football championship has been “a flicker of colour in his grey life” [14], but the game is only weeks away and Dad still hasn’t purchased tickets. When an accident causes Dad to suffer a calamitous concussion, he transforms from a book-obsessed reciter of encyclopedic facts to a loincloth-wearing Earth Warrior determined to save the neighborhood recreation area from a ruthless energy company called Tyranox. Dad’s actions draw the attention of local news outlets and the wrath of Mr. Barnabus Vump, president of Tyranox. Hero’s only hope of saving what’s left of his family lies in recalling facts quoted by his father, facts he thought were too embarrassing to warrant remembrance.    


Tackling death, grief, and global warming in one book may sound like a recipe for doom and gloom, but HAQ skillfully infuses every chapter with humor. Dad’s antics are a hoot, and more laughs are gleaned from Hero’s beloved Gran – a world travelling, motorcycle riding activist who delivers one humorous anecdote after another. Though Hero’s relationship with Gran is one of the highlights of the book, his perception of his two best friends is somewhat troubling. Hero has little appreciation for his “techno-geek” friend Mitzy, describing her as “bossy” and “annoyingly unhelpful.” And he has no sympathy for his friend Partha, who laments his dad’s proclivity to fart after eating dhal curry, because “having a dad who stinks is nothing compared to one who’s always got a book in front of his face” [23]. But it’s Hero’s ability to adapt and to see others in a new light that makes him a redeeming character.  


Cartoon lettering throughout enhances the playfulness of this quirky tale, and supplemental material on fracking and climate change at the back of the book make this an optimal choice for readers who enjoy learning in a lighthearted environment.  


Silly and fun, topical and timely, My Dad, the Earth Warrior is an approachable examination of climate change, interconnectedness, and the need for green energy conveyed through a heartening story of a boy and his dad working to understand and appreciate their differences.

Reviewed by

Once there was a girl with unkempt hair and knobby knees who spent her summers sipping honeysuckle blooms and staining her mouth with blackberries plucked from the vine. One day, she opened a book and tumbled into a realm of stories from whence she never returned.

Heatwave Blistering Bertha

About the author

Gary Haq is an environmental researcher. When he’s not involved in his own eco-adventures, he likes to write, read, learn languages and explore new cultures. Gary spends his time between York, England and Laveno, Italy. My Dad, the Earth Warrior is his first children’s book. view profile

Published on June 05, 2018

Published by

40000 words

Worked with a Reedsy professional 🏆

Genre: Middle Grade

Reviewed by