Book Review: HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS: A Life-Affirming, Love-Defending, Butt-Kicking, World-Saving Manifesto


Author: John Pavlovitz

Publisher: Simon & Schuster

Simon & Schuster Author’s Book Page

Genre: Self-Help: Personal Growth, Motivational, Religion: Christianity, Christian, Social Issues

Page Count: 256 pages

ISBN: 9781501179655

Publication Date: November 2018

Ships on or near: November 16, 2018

Available in Hardcover, Unabridged Audio Digital, and eBook

Pre-order From: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, IndieBound

Note: The links will open in separate windows, so you do not have to find your way back to the review.

My Rating: 5 Stars  

About the Author: From the Publisher:

“John Pavlovitz is a pastor and blogger from Wake Forest, North Carolina. In the past two years his blog, Stuff That Needs To Be Said, has reached a diverse audience of millions of people throughout the world, with an average monthly readership of over a million people. His home church, North Raleigh Community Church, is a growing, nontraditional Christian community dedicated to radical hospitality, mutual respect, and diversity of doctrine. John is a regular contributor to Huffington PostRelevant Magazine, Scary Mommy,, and The Good Men Project.”

John’s first full-length book is available on WJK Books and other book retailers. A Bigger Table: Building Messy, Authentic, and Hopeful Spiritual Community shares a bit of John’s story and a vision for a spiritual community that allows everyone a place.” Read Excerpt

Author’s Social Media Sites: JOHN PAVLOVITZ: Stuff That Needs To Be Said Website, Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, Contact John   

About HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS From the Publisher:

“Overwhelmed by the news cycle and the state of affairs in our world? Pastor, blogger, and powerful voice in the Resistance, John Pavlovitz has the answer: this rousing and inspirational guide, drawing from lessons of our favorite superheroes, for how we can band together, live more heroically (and meaningfully) and save the world. 

It’s exhausting to give a damn these days, isn’t it? Perhaps you’re feeling anguished about what you see on the news or in your social media timeline, or by your personal circumstances, and are paralyzed waiting for political or religious leaders, or celebrities, to rescue us from it all.

But what if you didn’t have to wait for someone else?

What if you could be the hero?

This book—a spirited call to action—shows you how.

In these pages, John offers a path away from the vitriol and toward com­passion, and a plan to transform our burdens into dreams and our outrage into activism. Drawing from lessons of beloved fictional superheroes, John shows us how to identify our origin story, build protective suits of armor, guard against our personal kryptonite, and vanquish our villains. He also identifies ten specific “superpowers” that we can enlist to make our lives and our world better. Along the way, he shares inspiring anecdotes and profiles about ordinary people who saw a gap in the world’s empathy or kindness or gratitude and decided to fill it.

Hope and Other Superpowers is an invitation to anyone hoping to be the kind of person the world so desperately needs—the kind who can save it. In other words: it’s an invitation to you.”

My Review:

In HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS we find John Pavlovitz doing what John Pavlovitz does best; articulating the questions, anger, and helplessness millions are feeling today, and have felt since November 9, 2016. Pavlovitz offers hope, but more importantly, he provides feasible solutions. The majority of Americans have become adept at pointing out what is wrong with our country and its leadership. Everyone watches the news, reads the paper and books while crying out for someone to do something. Millions of Americans want Superman or Wonder Woman to swoop in and save the day from the villains who are robbing Americans of their security and peace of mind while instilling fear in the country’s population. Many are looking for someone with the prerequisite superpowers to right the ship and alter its course, sooner rather than later. It isn’t enough to point out the wrongs without offering a solution to the problem. In HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS, Pavlovitz provides the reader with many useful tools to recognize their innate superpowers and challenges the reader to begin using these superpowers.

For millions of Americans, November 9, 2016, was a day which significantly changed the world as they knew it to be. It was the day the unthinkable happened. Americans awoke to news that left them feeling as if the universe had shifted, and everything began to look and feel different. For so many, it felt as if all hope was gone. The question was the same then as to is today, “What do I do now?” In HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS, John Pavlovitz answers this pivotal question. If the past two years have left you wondering what happened to my country; to my church; to my friends and families? You must read this book. If you find yourself staring into an abyss of anger, fear, cynicism, and bigotry without knowing what you can do to make right so many wrongs, you must read this book. John Pavlovitz has become, to millions, the voice crying out in the wilderness of desperation, fear, and anger. He gives voice to the greatest need for civility and direction in a wasteland of ugliness in HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS.

At the end of your time here, the world will either be more or less kind, compassionate, generous funny, creative, and loving because of your presence in it – and you alone get to choose”. John Pavlovitz

Pavlovitz encourages us that when so many around us have given up, you must reach deep within, acknowledge your weaknesses and work around them to become fierce caretakers of hope for those who have lost all hope. Hope is a superpower as it sustains life. Through kindness, compassion, and persistence everyone can be caretakers of hope.

In HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS, Pavlovitz speaks to the traits, gifts, talents, and abilities everyone possesses in one form or another and provides examples of how the smallest gesture can have a substantial impact on others. No one has the responsibility to change the world in a day, but those who have more superpowers than others have the opportunity to make a difference in someone’s world every day. All that is required is to “give a damn” and” show up.”

There are hope and encouragement within the pages of HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS, as well as inspiration by the many ways millions of people are doing their part for change; this is part of the wonder of this book. Pavlovitz reminds his readers that there are multitudes of every day, ordinary superheroes among the population. You are not alone. You have to get out and look for them, connect with them and put your “give a damn” attitude to work.

If you are looking for hope; if you need encouragement; if you feel frozen and need direction as to what the next step is, I encourage you to get a copy of HOPE AND OTHER SUPERPOWERS. This book is available for preorder now. I have provided links that open in individual tabs at the beginning of this blog post. Get your copy, read the book, and reread it, don your superhero cape and “lift your head skyward, hero – and go save the world.”

Thank you John Pavlovitz, Simon & Schuster and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this 5 Star book.


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