The Good Father - Noah Hawley

The Good Father

By Noah Hawley

  • Release Date: 2012-03-20
  • Genre: Literary
The Good Father book review score

4 Score: 4 (From 296 Ratings)

The Good Father Noah Hawley Book Review Score: ★★★★★ 5/5 stars

From the award-winning creator of the TV show Fargo and author of the bestseller Before the Fall, an intense, psychological novel about one doctor's suspense-filled quest to unlock the mind of a suspected political assassin: his twenty-year old son.
As the Chief of Rheumatology at Columbia Presbyterian, Dr. Paul Allen's specialty is diagnosing patients with conflicting symptoms, patients other doctors have given up on. He lives a contented life in Westport with his second wife and their twin sons—hard won after a failed marriage earlier in his career that produced a son named Daniel. In the harrowing opening scene of this provocative and affecting novel, Dr. Allen is home with his family when a televised news report announces that the Democratic candidate for president has been shot at a rally, and Daniel is caught on video as the assassin. 
Daniel Allen has always been a good kid—a decent student, popular—but, as a child of divorce, used to shuttling back and forth between parents, he is also something of a drifter. Which may be why, at the age of nineteen, he quietly drops out of Vassar and begins an aimless journey across the United States, during which he sheds his former skin and eventually even changes his name to Carter Allen Cash.
Told alternately from the point of view of the guilt-ridden, determined father and his meandering, ruminative son, The Good Father is a powerfully emotional page-turner that keeps one guessing until the very end. This is an absorbing and honest novel about the responsibilities—and limitations—of being a parent and our capacity to provide our children with unconditional love in the face of an unthinkable situation.

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User reviews about this book

  • The Good Father

    By SLKnurse
    This is an excellent book. I felt like I had been down this road with this parent. It is a difficult road to travel. We cannot believe our child could make the choices she did. How do you reconcile loving a your child with acceptance that he or she is a criminal? The pain is well described in this book.
  • Interesting but no surprises

    By Crafty Gma
    This book had an interesting storyline. But I kept waiting for the answer and it never came. I skimmed over some of the parts about other assassins and terrorists. Kind of got the idea that they were just fillers to stretch out the story. I’m a little disappointed.
  • Very disappointed

    By Cat/DogDaddy
    Long, tedious and not the insightful book that Harley apparently wanted this to be. His writing style here is flat as the proverbial pancake. There isn't even one character worthy of sympathy. I might now give up my belief that all books started deserve to be read until the bitter end.
  • The Good Father

    By Michael75003
    "Before The Fall" was fantastic. Very well written. Well developed. Great read. By contrast, "The Good Father" is extremely tedious, turgid and dull.
  • The Good Father

    By MarAir1953
    A TERRIBLE piece of fiction! Before The Fall drew me to the author who showed promise. Disappointed avid reader. Give it 1/2 Star.
  • Dreadful

    By sueellen1
    Arrogance of writer shows through in both writing style and main character! Who cares what a rheumatologist does. Clearly the main character was so self absorbed that he barreled along on his own private journey with no regard to the needs of his troubled son or other family members, even after his well- spoken, in- tune 2nd wife lays things out for him. A depressing read with no insights on how troubled children turn violent. Would have given it a minus rating but there doesn't seem to be a mechanism to do that.
  • I loved it

    By Dorightdoc
    I have not lost a child nor have I had a child take the life of another but I have been thru what I thought was pure hell in heartache and pain with my son. After reading The Good Father I know now it could have been much worse. Thank you for having this father never ever give up on his son as I have never given up on mine. Thank you for reassuring me that each of us has to go thru what we must to come out ok in the end and that not everyone can or will understand our reasons, our methods or our pain but learn to stand by us and let us figure it out on our own for it is the only way we can survive with any self worth. I recommend this book to everyone who has tried to understand someone else. It has made me want to write my story. if only I were able to tell mine this well.
  • The Good Father

    By Chickrider
    This book struck a lot of nerves with me as I am a product of a broken home as is the main character of the book. It was interesting to see the point of view from the sons side as well as the father's side. Also, it gives a new perspective on how families of notorious crinkles feel.
  • Not great

    By CTreaderinAZ
    This is a great story line, but very dry reading. Not much personality at all. I also take exception to the fact that the author keeps referencing what happened with Gabby Gifford in Phoenix. It happened in Tucson, not Phoenix. The book mentions it happening in Tucson early on, then later repeatedly refers to Phoenix. Need facts checked and better proof reading. The book has an unfinished feel to it.

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