I know, I know, Father’s Day was last weekend. But I was in the middle of a theatre production last weekend, and I decided to have Father’s Day this weekend instead.
Whether biological or honorary, fathers hold a significant place in our lives. There are some amazing real fathers out there (including my own) but on this blog I talk mostly about fictional things, and that is what I am going to do today.
As is my custom, I have compiled a list of specimens relating to the topic at hand and I will momentarily present said list to you. It is my hope that this list will encourage you to spend a little time appreciating fictional fathers, as well as whatever real fathers have had a positive influence on your life. And maybe take a minute to thank them for all that they’ve done.
Also, if you’re interested, awhile back I did an An Ode To Mothers post (in which I likened mother’s unto rocks, because they’re that awesome).
On to the list!
1. Nate Pullman, Wonder by R.J. Palacio
Nate is a father of two wonderful children, Olivia and August, and he is there for them both as Via navigates highschool and Auggie tries to figure out going to school for the first time, having been homeschooled before due to his many surgeries. Along with his wife Isabel, Nate is supportive of his children and never stops believing in them. Our parents should be our biggest cheerleaders, and Nate and Isabel display that beautifully. Not only that, but Nate is hilarious.
2. King Lune, The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis
King Lune has a pretty tiny role in this story, but it’s still important. He teaches his sons Cor and Corin what it means to be a good king, not only with his words but with his actions. Even if parents spend all the time in the world telling us what to do, it won’t do much good unless they act on what they say to prove that it means something. And King Lune showed Cor what it meant.
3. Mr. Hurd, Orbiting Jupiter by Gary D. Schmidt
It is quite possible that this man has a first name, but I do not know what it is. The point is, that he is great. As both a biological father and a foster father, he has a calm, gentleness that is firm enough for his sons to lean on. He knows that Joseph is in a hard place, but he doesn’t push him to change. He is just there for him, and he listens when Joseph is ready to talk. It can be hard not to try to fix people sometimes, but Mr. Hurd knows how to just be there with people in their struggles.
4. Martin Penderwick, The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall
Martin Penderwick is adorable. He is a botanist, a father of four girls, and extremely absentminded. He is also one of the kindest men to walk the earth. He has had to raise his daughters alone after his wife died of cancer, and though he may need their help now and again, he is doing a wonderful job. As absentminded as he can be, he is also attentive to his girls when they need him and he supports them in their dreams and aspirations.
5. Arthur Weasley, Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling
I can’t leave Mr. Weasley off this list. A kind, rather eccentric father of seven, he will do anything to protect his family. Even if he embarrasses half of them to death in the process. Not only will he do anything to protect his family, but he also wants to do the right thing and isn’t afraid to have an unpopular opinion.
6. Reece De Lainey, The Boy Who Steals Houses by C.G. Drews
THIS MAN. Sometimes super-nice people borderline on boring, but I couldn’t help but love Mr. De Lainey. He felt so genuine, which is really hard to pull off, but Cait did it and we are all proud of her. Anyway. Mr. De Lainey is a father of seven rather rambunctious youngsters, whom he is raising alone since the death of his wife. (So like a combination of Mr. Penderwick and Mr. Weasley, but completely different.) He builds houses for a living, but tries to be there for his kids as much as he can, and manages to practically adopt another troubled teen as well (SAM!!!). Bless him. We all need a Mr. De Lainey in our lives, okay.
7. Hans Hubermann, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
Hans is the foster father of Liesel Meminger. He plays the accordion. He teaches her to read. He and his wife Rosa do everything they can for this little girl who has lost so much. They both have different ways of showing it, but they both love her. Hans’ kindness to Liesel will probably break your heart. He retains a quiet human dignity while living in Germany during WWII, which wasn’t easy to do. And being a decent human being often has COSTS, which is important to remember. It’s also important to remember that it’s worth those costs. And it’s important to show our children that.
Whether they were biological fathers or not, these men all stepped up to be the fathers their children needed them to be. They showed them what it means to care for people, and believed in their children even when their children didn’t believe in themselves. We all need someone to do that for us.
Who are some of your favorite fictional dads? Did you do anything special for Father’s Day? How do you show appreciation for the important people in your life? Have you read any of the books I mentioned, and do you agree that these dads are worthy of note? Let me know in the comments!