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The Good Father

A Novel

by Noah Hawley

The Good Father
  • Critics' Opinion:

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  • First Published:
    Mar 2012, 320 pages
    Paperback:
    Jan 2013, 320 pages

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There are currently 24 reader reviews for The Good Father
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Caryl L. (Williamsburg, VA) (12/11/11)

The Good Father
This a very well-written, interesting and thought provoking book. None-the-less, it is a sad book affecting every character in the story. Paul's anxiety and effort to understand his son's actions to commit this horrible crime are mostly fruitless. The book explores a parent's responsibility to the child to fight for his freedom. Also, the responsibility of the parent to accept and let go. A very good read which I will probably read again and would highly recommend to all serious readers.
Iris F. (West Bloomfield, MI) (12/08/11)

The Good Father
I began reading The Good Father with the expectation that it would have the same emotional impact of We Need To Talk About Kevin. The opening pages flew through my hands, but disappointment came quickly. The emotional response of a father who comes face to face with his son who has been accused of killing the next president of the U.S. and has been shot while being captured fell flat. The encounter was in my opinion, unemotional and totally unrealistic. At this point I felt that the book lost its credibility.

Though the writing was fluid, I found details regarding other young assassins interesting but unnecessary towards moving the story along. I also didn't think the author created a protagonist who was so troubled that he would go to the extreme of killing. Though the book was fast reading it is not one I would reccommend
Kimberly B. (Atlanta, GA) (12/08/11)

A Real OMG Book!!!!
I haven't read a book THIS good in a while! I used to think it was overkill to describe any product, book, or movie with a bunch of grandiose adjectives, but "The Good Father" deserves every one of those words. Spellbinding, engaging, thought-provoking, riveting, mesmerizing, addicting, intriguing! Noah Hawley's writing is fluid and descriptive, his characters are enriching and the plot and scenery are even more alluring as the tale jet sets from coast to coast. I had to re-read his bio, because he writes with such authority and confidence I had to make sure he wasn't a Historian or Doctor moonlighting as a writer. I got a history lesson, all while questioning my own morals and abilities as a parent and a person. This book made me want to learn more and know more about politics, history, the government, the human condition, and matters of the heart. I literally TORE through the pages to get to the end, one that does not disappoint by the way! The next time someone asks me what's a good read I am definitely going to insist they read "The Good Father".
Lori E. (Wayland, MA) (12/05/11)

The Good Father
I found The Good Father a compelling read, very thought-provoking and discussion-worthy. It reminded me of books I enjoyed by Jodi Picoult and Rosellen Brown. I like that it was told mostly from the father’s perspective, both as a parent facing one of your worst nightmares and integrating his career as a doctor who is a diagnostician. My only criticism of the book is that the author is a little heavy-handed trying to include all the research he did on assassins, guns, etc., although it was probably intended to show the father’s need to do comprehensive research on the subject.

I think book discussion groups would appreciate reading this book, and it will provoke interesting discussions about divorce, custody and new families.
Rebecca G. (havertown, pa) (12/03/11)

A Powerful Book for every Parent
Whenever I hear a story of senseless killing, my first thought is always for the victims. But the thought that follows close behind is a thought about the parents. Not just the parent of the victims but also the parent of the killer especially if it’s a young person. I always wonder how I would react. Would I go over every detail of my child’s life to figure out how that child had come to such a bad place? For this reason, this book really spoke to my heart. The father in this book does exactly that. I understood his need to obsessively read details of the lives of murders, from Sirhan Sirhan to John Hinckley. I understood his need, as a doctor, to methodically work through the puzzle of his child’s life. I understood the pain in wondering where a parent goes wrong in their child’s life; what specific incident leads a child to murder. It’s a powerful struggle that allows him to go on. Beautifully written; when it was over I cried and hugged my children. This book is a great read for anyone but a must for every parent.
Patricia M. (Davidson, North Carolina) (12/02/11)

The Good Father
This is a wonderful book. I could not wait to read it each day. The author did a great job with developing the characters and interspersing the story with actual events was brilliant. This should be a best seller and I look forward to reading other books by this author.
Mary F. (Muskegon, Mi) (11/30/11)

The Good Father
This was a good book that was hard to put down. I enjoyed the historical facts of past assassinations in this country. The story was intense. The end for me was a little bit of a let down, and there were some details of characters were gross that I did not think were necessary. Overall, it was a good book. I am glad I read it.
Anita P. (Lutherville, MD) (11/28/11)

Intriguing, psychological novel
I love a book that I can't put down; and The Good Father definitely was one of those. The story follows the life of child of divorce through the eyes of his father. As a child of divorce myself, I could really relate to the issues the book raises about how a parent thinks they are there for the child, and they really are not. In addition, the Good Father weaves interesting historical profiles that add insights into the story of the child. Hawley definitely knows how to generate suspense that propels through this sad tale.
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Beyond the Book:
  Parents of Young Killers

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