The Good Father- Noah Hawley(4 out of 5)

Paul Allen’s son has just been arrested after shooting the popular Presidential candidate. Paul hasn’t really forged a close bond with his son Daniel, and when his son is locked down pending trial, Paul does his best to make up for lost time. He hits the beaten path and tries to find possible conspirators and different scenarios- including taking himself to task for not being a better father. All the evidence points to the fact that Daniel acted alone, and that makes Paul an even more desperate man. Remarried with children, Paul must also try to continue acting as a full partner and father to his new family, despite the fact that he is consumed with wanting to find the true murderer and prove his son innocent. Does he? Well, you’ll have to read to find out how this one ends.

It’s truly a well written book. Noah Hawley is a gifted novelist. The character of Paul is frank and doesn’t pull punches in the blame game. He also doesn’t take the easy way out of things in regard to the way people-friends, colleagues, total strangers- begin to treat him and his family in light of Daniel’s action and accusations. Daniel is a character I tried to get my head around, but he was off in so many different directions. However- given the psychological makeup of an accused murderer with a dissociative disorder- the character and his ruminations make perfect sense. I also like how Hawley, in building up to Daniel’s side of the story, brings up some true crime history- John Hinckley, Sirhan Sirhan, and Timothy McVeigh make appearances also. Fascinating, the way that Hawley structed the book in this manner. It works extremely well.

I would point to this book being similiar to S.J. Watson’s superior novel of last year Before I Go To Sleep, in the deep-thinking and thought-provoking fashion. It’s so well written that you aren’t sure what the hell is going on and what’s going to happen. And when it does, well, it’s not contrived in the slightest and you feel sympathy for the father and the son. Not only does Paul redeem himself as the good father, but the author redeems the book as a surpreme effort. I simply loved the book.

~ by generationgbooks on July 27, 2012.

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