In case it slipped your mind, Sunday the 19th of June is a pretty important day. For a whole twenty four hours we are not allowed to ask our fathers for a little extra cash, make him superglue our broken possessions or get him to, once again, explain how to use the printer. It’s easy to buy him a suitably amusing card, perhaps with a reference to his hygiene or drinking habits, but deciding what gift to buy him is a little trickier. Dads are notoriously difficult to buy for. My father in particular tends to buy himself things he fancies rather than waiting for his brood to purchase it for him. In fact he is renowned for turning up days before a present giving occasion, replica of your purchased gift in hand.
This year I’d suggest you steer clear of the tacky tie, the cheap cufflinks or the bottle of whisky and buy your dad a book. Whether your father is an avid or a reluctant reader, a lover of science fiction or a murder mystery addict, this list will hopefully give you the literary inspiration you need to select the perfect read for the paternal presence in your life. Avoid the tempting displays of dad-appropriate golfing/civil war titles and take inspiration from my selection of literary greats and new releases:
– The Finkler Question RRP £7.99. The recent Man Booker winner is a story of friendship and reminiscence. Following Julian Treslove and his old school friend Sam Finkler, and described as containing some of the “wittiest, most poignant and sharply intelligent comic prose in the English language”, The Finkler Question is a tale concerned with ageing, acceptance and the power of humanity.
– To Kill A Mockingbird RRP £6.99. International bestseller and Pulitzer prize winner, this literary great is the tale of a father defending the truth and struggling to fight for justice whilst bringing up his two children in a state steeped in prejudice and hypocrisy.
– About a Boy RRP £7.99. At times laugh out loud funny, About A Boy is the story of Will, a terminally hip unmarried and directionless man from North London. When he meets Marcus, a twelve year old target for bullies, Will’s life changes beyond recognition. About A Boy follows Will’s discovery of a new responsibility whilst he struggles to become a worthy role model for Marcus.
– The Hitch Hikers Guide to the Galaxy RRP £7.99. “On 12 October 1979 the most remarkable book ever to come out of the great publishing corporations of Ursa Minor (and Earth) was made available to humanity”… need I say more?!
– The Spy Who Came in from the Cold – RRP £8.99. Set during the Cold War, The Spy Who Came in from the Cold is the ultimate spy story. Graham Greene himself even gave it his stamp of approval describing it as the best spy novel he had ever read.
– The War of the Worlds – RRP £7.99. Aliens from Mars land near Woking (coincidently where my own father works) and chaos ensues. The novel, which is indescribably better than the film, tells the story of mankind’s fight against the menacing extra terrestrial tripods!
Published on June 17th 2011 on www.litro.co.uk.