It arrived today, and I finished it in 20 minutes!
In all the time I'd read notices about this book, I'd never ever gotten the impression that it was written as a children's book. But now, I look at the Product Details section of the Amazon description of it for the first time, and there it is right at the start:
Age Range: 8 - 12 years
Grade Level: 3 - 7
By all accounts, Bill Finger is the uncredited co-creator of Batman who died in 1974 with barely any fanfare. And surely none was expected from fans who knew nothing about him and his connection to the Caped Crusader.
Every page of the story is fully illustrated, like children books are, with oversized panels to echo the comic book motif. The artwork is clean and drawn in a realistic but simplistic style, presenting both specific key scenes in Finger's life as well as a few spreads spotlighting his most important work on Batman.
I was shocked when I opened my package to find an oversized children's book. But was relieved that this turned out to be a satisfying biography shining a spotlight on a man that I never knew about but am now so grateful to. He wrote the earliest adventures of my childhood hero which Kane didn't always draw (Kane hired ghost artists, among them Jerry Robinson, to help draw those early Batman stories). It makes me a little sad knowing what Kane never shared with his collaborator. But through this modest book, Bill Finger finally gets some long overdue recognition.