The Council of Dads: Book summary and reviews of The Council of Dads by Bruce Feiler

The Council of Dads

My Daughters, My Illness, and the Men Who Could Be Me

By Bruce Feiler

The Council of Dads
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  • Published in USA  May 2010,
    256 pages.

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Book Summary

Bestselling author Bruce Feiler was a young father when he was diagnosed with cancer. He instantly worried what his daughters' lives would be like without him. "Would they wonder who I was? Would they wonder what I thought? Would they yearn for my approval, my love, my voice?"

Three days later he came up with a stirring idea of how he might give them that voice. He would reach out to six men from all the passages in his life, and ask them to be present in the passages in his daughters' lives. And he would call this group "The Council of Dads."

"I believe my daughters will have plenty of opportunities in their lives," he wrote to these men. "They'll have loving families. They'll have each other. But they may not have me. They may not have their dad. Will you help be their dad?"

The Council of Dads is the inspiring story of what happened next. Feiler introduces the men in his Council and captures the life lesson he wants each to convey to his daughters--how to see, how to travel, how to question, how to dream. He mixes these with an intimate, highly personal chronicle of his experience battling cancer while raising young children, along with vivid portraits of his father, his two grandfathers, and various father figures in his life that explore the changing role of fathers in America.

This is the work of a master storyteller confronting the most difficult experience of his life and emerging with wisdom and hope. The Council of Dads is a touching, funny, and ultimately deeply moving book on how to live life, how the human spirit can respond to adversity, and how to deepen and cherish the friendships that enrich our lives.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"Feiler tackles personal hardship with inquisitive and heartfelt eloquence." - Kirkus Reviews

"[I]t's hard not to get swept along and cheer Feiler on as he fights for his life and his daughters." - Publishers Weekly

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Author Information

Bruce Feiler Author Biography

Photo Credit: Andrew Feiler

Bruce Feiler is the New York Times bestselling author of Walking the Bible, Learning to Bow, Looking for Class, and Under the Big Top. A frequent contributor to NPR's All Things Considered, and contributing editor for Gourmet he writes regularly about American music for The New York Times, The New Yorker, and other publications, and recieved international acclaim for his influential cover story in The New Republic, "Gone Country." A native of Savannah, Georgia, Mr. Feiler is a graduate of Yale and Cambridge Universities, and now divides his time between Nashville and New York.

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Link to Bruce Feiler's Website

Name Pronunciation
Bruce Feiler: fi-ler (first syllable rhymes with my)

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