There’s a New Superhero in Town: New Big Brother or Big Sister Book

Every Hero Needs a Sidekick

We recently released a brand spankin’ new personalized children’s book, called Every Hero Needs a Sidekick!  This big brother, big sister book follows the adventure of your little superhero as they find out they’re getting a sidekick: a new baby brother or sister.

We’ve turned up the volume on personalization again – this time showing images of the big sister or big brother throughout the book.  So you’ll get the chance to choose skin and hair color when creating your book.

We think you’re going to love it!

How This Big Brother or Big Sister Book Came To Be

If you’ve birthed (or adopted) more than one child, then you know firsthand the fear parents have about welcoming a new baby. Gone are the logistical parenting doubts… “Will I know what to do?” In their place, new anxieties about how your older child(ren) will handle the change… “Will they love becoming a big brother or big sister? Or will they sneak into the nursery to torment this poor, innocent babe?”

BigBrothersHoldingBaby1 We now have three sons. So we’ve had two chances to prepare young sons for big-brotherhood. Each time, we watched mom’s belly grow and change. And as we did we looked for ways to build excitement about the coming baby. We sang to the baby together. We read books to the baby together. We listened to mom’s tummy and felt for movement. And we talked… a lot.

All of this was aimed at sharing what it meant to become a big brother. We focused mainly on the upsides (how awesome it would be to become the big brother and how this little baby would grow into a new friend). But we didn’t ignore some of the important changes that were coming- some version of “just because you’re sharing the spotlight now doesn’t mean we love you any less.”

Like our first personalized children’s book, Following Featherbottom, which was sparked when we were expecting our 1st child, the seeds for Every Hero Needs a Sidekick were planted while we were expecting. Both times we were preparing our sons for big-brotherhood, we were generally disappointed by the big brother / big sister books we found on the market (with a couple exceptions we’ll share in another post). And like any children’s book author, I thought I could find a way to do it better.

But it took about 7 years for those seeds to sprout into a book.

Get to Know Every Hero Needs a Sidekick

The Artwork

The first thing you’ll notice about our new personalized children’s book Every Hero Needs a Sidekick is that it features an image of the superhero on every spread of the book. Ever since we launched MarbleSpark, we’ve had customers tell us they wish we could show their child in the book… well, we decided to give it a shot!

As we suspected, this turned out to be, uh, haaaaaaaaard. After finishing the manuscript a couple years ago, we’ve spent the past two years conquering the artistic and technical challenges.

To give you a sense of the scale of this challenge, with 4 skin tones, 6 hair colors and 10 hair-styles, Brad Sneed created 240 variations of every single illustration in this book.


To honor the superhero theme of the book, the art style is comic-book inspired – with plenty of panels and speech-bubbles – with all of Brad Sneed’s playfulness and beauty on full display.

The Story

Like all great comic books, our story centers around a superhero with some pretty cool super-powers:

Hero Art 6-7

But when Mom mentions our hero could really use a sidekick…


But our hero isn’t convinced…


Our hero looks for answers to important mysteries…

…and imagines what new super-powers this sidekick might unlock…



How will our story end?!?

There’s only one way to find out! You can click here to take a tour of Every Hero Needs a Sidekick.

Or better yet, go personalize a copy for the big brother or big sister in your life. As always, it’s free to see a full preview of your very own personalized book.

Hope you love it as much as we do!

Phil, Stacey, Brad and Ken

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