Tuesday, June 14, 2011

[Quick Picks] Great Dads in Fiction and Non-Fiction

Father's Day is Sunday, June 19th. Many fathers and father figures will be honored on this special day. If you are interested in books with memorable fathers take a look at the staff suggestions we've listed below. *Titles are in alphabetical order*

An American Dream, by Clarence Adams

Clarence Adams was a Memphis native who became a prisoner of war during the Korean War. Unwilling to return to the racism awaiting him in America, Adams chose to remain in China, where he earned a college degree and started a family. Despite being considered a traitor, Adams' decision to stay in China shed light on the racism many African American veterans faced on their return to the United States. Della Adams is his daughter and co-editor of this amazing memoir.

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

He is only known as "father" but he is one of the most heroic male characters I've ever encountered in a work of fiction. The father is determined to provide for and protect his son in a world where most of the animal, plant, and human population is dead. The father shows by example that there is still virtue in a world where starving people commit unspeakable acts to survive. Despite the bleak setting, this story shows the power and beauty of the bond between a father and son.
--Darletha Matthews, South Branch

Girls of Summer, by Barbara Bretton

If you have ever lived in a small town, seen movies, or read books about small town life, you will really enjoy this book! It has something for everyone. It will make you laugh and cry. This book deals with the different dynamics of restoring, reviving, and renewing old or new relationships and friendships. Hall Talbot is a thrice-divorced father trying to raise his four daughters. The main female character, Ellen Markowitz, is a single woman longing for a family of her own and a sense of belonging. She's grappling with the complex relationship that she has with the father who raised her, the birth father who didn't, her two sisters, and the growing feelings that she has for the thrice-divorced father.
--Twan Jones, South Branch

A Raisin in the Sun, by Lorraine Hansberry

Arguably, Black America's best known literary family is the Younger family of Lorraine Hansberry's A Raisin in the Sun. While undoubtedly the family's moral center is Mama, the family's future is to be determined and handed down through the family's two fathers: recently deceased "Big Walter" Lee, who has left the family a life insurance policy inheritance and his son Walter Lee (now designated as the family patriarch) who is father to Travis who represents the the 6th generation of Youngers.
--Robert Bain, Randolph Branch

To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee

Atticus Finch was a lawyer in the Southern Alabama town of Maycomb during the Great Depression. The small town was prominently white, and unfortunately, racist. When scandal between a well-to-do white girl and a poor, uneducated black man rocks the small town, Atticus teaches his children, Scout and Jem, as well the entire town, compassion and understanding for those who are different when defending Arthur (Boo) Radley.
--Andrea King, Poplar-White Station Branch

Can you think of any great dads from books you've read? Share them with Memphis Reads by leaving a comment.

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Great pics every one. I would have put Atticus Finch at the top of the list, but to each his own.
However, father figures could also be recognized on Father's Day along with actual fathers. I've had a couple (along with a great father) and modeled one of my characters in "Partners" after those who have 'directed' me over the years.
And, no, I don't believe my Tom Brash character is any where as great as Atticus Finch
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