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Daddy Issues: Dads in Fiction

The Godfather
by Mario Puzo

A fictional portrait journeys inside the world of the Cosa Nostra and its operations to chronicle the lives and fortunes of Mafia leader Vito Corleone, his family, and his underworld domain.
The World According to Garp
by John Irving

T.S. Garp, a man with high ambitions for an artistic career and with obsessive devotion to his wife and children, and Jenny Fields, his famous feminist mother, find their lives surrounded by an assortment of people including teachers, whores, and radicals.
by Jonathan Franzen

The idyllic lives of civic-minded environmentalists Patty and Walter Berglund come into question when their son moves in with aggressive Republican neighbors. Green lawyer Walter takes a job in the coal industry, and go-getter Patty becomes increasingly unstable and enraged.
The Shining
by Stephen King

Jack Torrance sees his stint as winter caretaker of a Colorado hotel as a way back from failure, his wife sees it as a chance to preserve their family, and their five-year-old son sees the evil waiting just for them.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
by Mark Haddon

Despite his overwhelming fear of interacting with people, Christopher, a mathematically-gifted, autistic fifteen-year-old boy, decides to investigate the murder of a neighbor's dog and uncovers secret information about his mother.
The Children's Crusade
by Ann Packer

When their troubled youngest sibling returns, the three oldest Blair children, adults now and still living near the family home, find their lives disrupted in ways they could have never imagined as they each tell their story that is interwoven with portraits of their family at crucial points in their history.
A Thousand Acres
by Jane Smiley

On a prosperous Iowa farm in the 1970s, wealthy farmer Lawrence Cook announces his intentions to divide the farm among his daughters, setting off a family crisis reminiscent of Shakespeare's "King Lear."
The Road
by Cormac McCarthy

In a novel set in an indefinite, futuristic, post-apocalyptic world, a father and his young son make their way through the ruins of a devastated American landscape, struggling to survive and preserve the last remnants of their own humanity.
To Kill a Mockingbird
by Harper Lee

The explosion of racial hate and violence in a small Alabama town is viewed by a young girl whose father defends a black man accused of rape.
Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close
by Jonathan Safran Foer

Oskar Schell, the nine-year-old son of a man killed in the World Trade Center bombing, searches the city for a lock that fits a black key his father left behind.