Top Ten Tuesday is an original weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish.
This Week’s Theme:
Literary Father Figures
Father figures give me all the feels because my pops is whom I grew up with mainly, so there’s something special about reading father/child dynamics.
The Blackthorn Key (Kevin Sands)
But when a mysterious cult begins to prey on London’s apothecaries, the trail of murders grows closer and closer to Blackthorn’s shop. With time running out, Christopher must use every skill he’s learned to discover the key to a terrible secret with the power to tear the world apart.
The best way I can describe Benedict Blackthorn is that he falls in line with the Gandalfs and Dumbledores of mentors. And the fact that he gave Christopher, when he was an orphan, a chance at life is too precious.
The Inexplicable Logic of My Life (Benjamin Alire Saenz)
Everything is about to change. Until this moment, Sal has always been certain of his place with his adoptive gay father and their loving Mexican-American family. But now his own history unexpectedly haunts him, and life-altering events force him and his best friend, Samantha, to confront issues of faith, loss, and grief.
As a father figure, Vicente is the closest in fiction (I’ve seen) to being like what I’ve experienced in terms of doing parental stuff; from being present to how he handles Salvatore (the son)’s friends.
I Hunt Killers (Barry Lyga)
Jasper “Jazz” Dent is a likable teenager. A charmer, one might say. But he’s also the son of the world’s most infamous serial killer, and for Dear Old Dad, Take Your Son to Work Day was year-round. Jazz has witnessed crime scenes the way cops wish they could—from the criminal’s point of view. And now bodies are piling up in Lobo’s Nod.
Is this an odd choice? Perhaps. But, something has to be said about Jasper’s dad who — although deserves the worst father award for murdering everyone and then some — at least he prepped his son to do great things. Note: I haven’t read books 2 and 3 so I can’t say much else aside from this.
Scythe (Neal Shusterman)
A world with no hunger, no disease, no war, no misery. Humanity has conquered all those things, and has even conquered death. Now scythes are the only ones who can end life—and they are commanded to do so, in order to keep the size of the population under control.
Citra and Rowan are chosen to apprentice to a scythe—a role that neither wants. These teens must master the “art” of taking life, knowing that the consequence of failure could mean losing their own.
Scythe Faraday is a stand up fella; especially when your first introduction of him is basically him crashing someone’s house and almost has dinner with them.
Chaos Walking (Patrick Ness)
Prentisstown isn’t like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else’s thoughts in an overwhelming, never-ending stream of Noise. Just a month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd and his dog, Manchee — whose thoughts Todd can hear too, whether he wants to or not — stumble upon an area of complete silence. They find that in a town where privacy is impossible, something terrible has been hidden — a secret so awful that Todd and Manchee must run for their lives.
Bennison and Cillian — both having different styles of parenting but their devotion to Todd’s safety is numbing. Only those who have read this can sympathize with me.
Harry Potter (J.K. Rowling)
Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
You’ve got your pick between a lot of mentor-y figures in Hagrid and Sirius and company but I think a lot of it does stem back to Dumbledore for me; the one who did what he could for the boy-who-should-have-died-in-every-other-scene with just Dumbledore being Dumbledore. (Also Hermione, but you know)>
Steelheart (Brandon Sanderson)
Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his will.
Nobody fights the Epics…nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them. And David wants in. He wants Steelheart — the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David’s father.
Jonathan Phaedrus, for the most part, is that walking info-dump of leader-ish charm. (Although if we’re really talking about standout older guys in this story, then how about the random epic with the powers to conduit electricity and ended up killing his wife over heating up a burrito. Classic.)
I Believe in a Thing Called Love (Maureen Goo)
…so when the hottest human specimen to have ever lived walks into her life one day, Desi decides to tackle her flirting failures with the same zest she’s applied to everything else in her life. She finds her answer in the Korean dramas her father has been obsessively watching for years—where the hapless heroine always seems to end up in the arms of her true love by episode ten.
Let me first say that Desi’s father reminds me a lot of the appa on Kim’s Convenience. If you haven’t seen that show, I do recommend it. It is also set in Canada at a store I work relatively close to, so there’s that.
Goodbye Days (Jeff Zentner)
The next day he lost it all when he sent a simple text to his friend Mars, right before Mars, Eli, and Blake were killed in a car crash.
I initially thought of Carver’s doctor/psychologist as my pick…but then I was reminded of Mars and his stoic judge of a father who was incredibly hard-headed and by the book that his relationship with Carver was one based on the fact that Carver allegedly killed his son. So when they do meet and they do build that relationship re: Goodbye Day, there was something oddly cathartic and necessary as to their development that worked for me.
Pops giving me all the feels.