Whether he was good, bad, drunk, heroic, or just plain absent, chances are your father has left his stamp upon you. In this warmhearted, sometimes droll, often poignant collection, a host of men and women reminisce about their fathers - from wrathful patriarchs to incorrigible eccentrics to doting dads.Aissa Wayne offers a heartfelt account of John Wayne's final, heroic appearance at the Oscars. Arthur Ashe remembers his father's personal triumph over the injustices of racism. Sean Lennon wistfully recalls the brief five years of his life before John Lennon's murder when "my dad and I were buddies, and there was no real sorrow." Candice Bergen tells about sitting on her father's knee next to Charlie McCarthy while the famous ventriloquist merrily squeezed their necks and spoke for both of them. And in the magnificent comic essay that opens the volume, Wilfrid Sheed fondly describes his unconventional father as "a total irredeemable indoorsman." Here too are cameos of fictional fathers, with moving excerpts from Mona Simpson's The Lost Father and Kazuo Ishiguro's The Remains of the Day, to name only two.As the chapter "Daddy Dearest" reveals, life with father cannot always be likened to one long idyllic game of catch in the park. Pat Conroy dreaded his father's temper. Antoinette Giancana was sternly admonished by her Mafioso father that she should "never, never open the door to a stranger." And Laurence Olivier once wryly remarked that the only trouble between him and his father "was that he couldn't see the slightest purpose in my existence." But more often these remembrances are affectionate and nostalgic. Perhaps it is true, as Nietschze tells us, that if you have not had a good father, it is necessary to invent one. This marvelously varied book celebrates fathers of all stripes, and offers moving testimony to the ways in which a father's legacy endures.
- Hardback | 240 pages
- 149.86 x 213.36 x 25.4mm | 453.59g
- 01 May 1993
- Penguin Group USA
- E P Dutton