Confessions of a Hero-Worshiper by Stephen J. Dubner

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As a boy, Stephen J. Dubner's hero was Franco Harris, the famed and mysterious running back for the Pittsburgh Steelers. When Dubner's father died, he became obsessed—he dreamed of his hero every night; he signed his school papers "Franco Dubner." Though they never met, it was Franco Harris who shepherded Dubner through a fatherless boyhood. Years later, Dubner journeys to meet his hero, certain that Harris will embrace him. And he is . . . well, wrong.

Told with the grit of a journalist and the grace of a memoirist, Confessions of a Hero-Worshiper is a breathtaking, heartbreaking, and often humorous story of astonishing developments. It is also a sparkling meditation on the nature of hero worship—which, like religion and love, tells us as much about ourselves as about the object of our desire.


About Stephen J. Dubner

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While attending Appalachian State University, Stephen J. Dubner started a rock band that was signed to Arista Records. He eventually stopped playing music to earn an M.F.A. in writing at Columbia University, where he also taught in the English Department. From 1990 to 1994, he was an editor and writer at New York magazine. He has written for numerous publications including The New Yorker, Time, and The Washington Post. He is an award-winning author and journalist. He is the coauthor, with Steven D. Levitt, of Freakonomics: A Rogue Economist Explores the Hidden Side of Everything. It won the inaugural Quill Award for best business book; a Visionary Award from the National Council on Economic Education; and was named a Notable Book of 2005 by the New York Times. His other works include Turbulent Souls: A Catholic Son's Return to His Jewish Family (1998), Confessions of a Hero-Worshiper (2003), and The Boy with Two Belly Buttons (2007).
Published October 13, 2009 by HarperCollins e-books. 304 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Sports & Outdoors. Non-fiction

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His father died when Dubner was 13, just when the man had emerged from a long depression and had shone brightly for a few years, his death stealing away the fatherly spark that Dubner still needed (“Take me, lead me, teach me, protect me, give me permission”).

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Publishers Weekly

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In a candid yet somewhat disjointed account, Dubner (Turbulent Souls) explores the causes and effects of his devotion to a childhood hero.

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