So yesterday I found out some disheartening news. Perry Moore--the openly gay author of HERO and executive producer of the Chronicles of Narnia films--was found dead from an accidental drug overdose on February 17th. He was only 39 years old. His death was not just a shock to my system but struck me as odd since I literally was just talking about him a few days ago and gave an extra copy of his book HERO I had on my bookshelf to a friend.
Many people probably have never heard of Perry Moore or wonder what's the big deal. While he was more known for his dedication as a producer of the Chronicles of Narnia films, I will always remember him as an author, even though he only had 1 or 2 books published. HERO is a young adult novel about a teenager named Thom who is trying to come to terms with his sexuality and superpowers. Yes, I said superpowers. Moore was an openly gay man who felt that it was important to create positive gay characters for anyone out there-- young and old--who may stumble across his book(s) (he planned to write more obviously) that might be struggling with their own sexuality. Even though I had read many stories with gay characters, they were mainly stories that were in ebook format and of the adult variety. Perry Moore's HERO was the first young adult novel I had read with a main character that was gay.
Moore's short life is not only tragic for his family and life partner, but also his fans. He had apparently just secured funding for the next Chronicles of Narnia film which was not an easy task since the last Narnia film did not do as well as expected. Moore was also in negotations with STARZ to adapt HERO into a possible tv series. I think that will hurt fans the most, including myself.
I send my love and support to his loved ones during this devastating time. I can only hope that someone close to him, perhaps his life partner, Hunter Hill, will keep negotiating with STARZ so that HERO gets adapted to film. What a great way to honor his memory.