With Father's Day here, I thought it would be great to look at depictions of dads in literature. Fathers often get a bad rap in novels as absentee parents or worse. I am so very grateful to my husband for being a calm, loving father to our four children. I can always count on him to co-parent with me and give me a different perspective.
Here are some great examples of good fathers in fiction:
1. Mr. Bennett from Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austin:
At first it would appear that the character of Mr. Bennett is too aloof and stays in his study to avoid his wife and daughters. But I found his character to be very outside the norm of men of that time. He actually respects his children! His concern is not to marry them off to whomever just to get them off his hands. He cares about whether or not his daughters actually want to be matched up with their suitors. This would have been a revelation for this era. I love that Mr. Bennett lets the young women lead their own lives, but intervenes when then get in over their heads, as Lydia does.
2. Dr. Covey from To All The Boys I've Loved Before, by Jenny Han:
This is the father of the main character, Lara Jean. I really liked how the dad (who was Caucasian) made sure his daughters knew about their Korean heritage. After his wife dies, Dr. Covey works hard to try and cook Korean dishes, and upholds New Year's Day traditions such as visiting his former In-Laws with the girls dressed in special Korean clothing. Keeping these cultural aspects in their lives helped his daughters remember their mother. I thought that was very sweet of him and it couldn't have been easy.
3. Mr. Weasley from the Harry Potter series, by J.K. Rowling:
Arthur Weasley is the dad to the many Weasley children (Ginny, Ron, Fred, George, Percy, Charlie, and Bill). He must work at the Wizards government Ministry of Magic, even when it is dangerous for him. Having to make enough money to raise seven kids, and put them all through private school, must have been an enormous challenge. So he didn't have the option to quit and find a less hazardous occupation. Both he and his wife created a loving home so that, even without a lot of luxuries, they had a very happy family life.
4. The dad in A Night Divided, by Jennifer A. Nielsen:
Although this character is absent for much of the book, the dad plays a very important role in the story. This novel follows a family separated when the Berlin Wall goes up. The dad had gone to the western part of the city with one of his sons to look for work just as The Wall goes up. His wife and two other children are trapped in East Berlin. Through his determination, the dad finds ways to communicate an escape plan to his children. He never gives up trying to reunite his family, even if it will take years to do so.
What are your favorite fathers in fiction? Let me know in the comments.