Author Marc Tyler Nobleman Visits Lower School, Shares Story Behind Creation of Superman, Batman

Webb School of Knoxville’s Lower School welcomed author Marc Tyler Nobleman, November 6, who spoke with Webb Pre-K through fifth grade students about the history behind the creation of Superman and Batman, the important roles curiosity and perseverance play in research, and how the creators of Superman and Batman continue to influence him in his work. He also reminded the students that history is all around them; they just have to take the time to notice.

Author of numerous non-fiction titles for children and middle grade readers, Nobleman is perhaps best known for his books, Boys of Steel: The Creators of Superman and Bill the Boy Wonder: The Secret Co-Creator of Batman. In The Boys of Steel, Nobleman details the early lives of Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster, two high schoolers who developed the character of Superman during the Great Depression and helped propel the era of superhero comics. Boys of Steel received multiple star reviews and was named an American Library Association Notable Book.

Bill, the Boy Wonder highlights the role of Bill Finger in the creation of Batman. Finger came up with the original version of Batman in 1939; yet, during the first 25 years of Batman comics, his name only appeared once, while all the credit for Batman went to co-creator Bob Kane. Due to the discoveries Nobleman made in his research, Bill, the Boy Wonder was featured on the front page of USA Today, on NPR and is the subject of a Hulu documentary, entitled “Batman & Bill, which chronicles Finger’s career. In addition, DC Comics has attached Finger’s name to more recent comic books and productions involving Batman.

Nobleman’s other titles include Brave Like My Brother, The Chupacabra Ate the Candelabra, Fairy Spell, and Thirty Minutes Over Oregon. A popular speaker at schools, conferences and other venues, Nobleman blogs about his writing and research experiences at Noblemania.