Father’s Day is fast approaching and this Sunday it will be time to celebrate our dads. Happy Father’s Day!
I’ve read a lot of middle grade books the past year where the dad is not portrayed in the best light. In fact, it felt like a large number of dads in MG books were not doing their job of being a father. My curiosity took control as I wondered whether the books I’ve read really did predominantly have a poor role model father. Or could it be I was remembering the bad and forgetting the fathers who were there for their kids.
I went back to every book I read since the last Father’s Day (60 total). It wasn’t difficult as I reviewed many of them here and the rest remain on my bookshelf. I placed each dad in one of four categories. The final percentages are different than expected.
DAD IS DIVORCED OR WALKED OUT AND HASN’T BEEN SEEN SINCE (39%)
DAD HOME AND A POSITIVE ROLE MODEL IN CHILD’S LIFE (31%)
DAD IS DEAD (15%)
DAD HOME BUT NOT A PART OF CHILD”S LIFE (15%)
- Example: SORRY YOU’RE LOST
The largest category could probably be split as many divorced dads in books do a fine job of staying connected with their kids.
Do the results stand up to all recent MG books. Yes, I’d say this is a pretty good sample size.
Do the results parallel real life? I’d hope not, but I’m probably wrong.
What do you think? Are dad’s getting a fair shake in MG books?