Book review:

Fathers Are Like Elephants Because They're the Biggest Ones Around

(But They Still Are Pretty Gentle Underneath)

By David Heller.

Published in the USA by Villard Books, elsewhere by Random House.

ISBN 0-679-41758-3

Review by John Holley

This is a book in praise of the role of fathers and the role of fatherhood in today's society. It doen't take on any high brow attitude or present statistics.

Nope, it goes to the "customers" (to use the free market parlance) of fathers - children.

The book is full of sayings by children about fathers. If you are a father and would like affirmation of how important your role is, this book speaks straight to your heart.

If you are a NCP feeling lonely this book will probably bring tears to your eyes, but it will remind you of how important your children think you are.

You may be a father in a normal family situation - this book will still remind you of how important your role is and, as it did for me, bring the odd tear to the eye.

As David Heller says "While they share many insightful observations about fatherhood in general, child after child will convince you that there's nobody else quite like their own dear ol' dad."

Note: The book was published in 1993. There are no distributors in NZ/Australia. I placed my order via <> which has to be the best online book store I've seen!

Some quotes from the book:

The Nature of Fatherhood:

"Fatherhood isn't for weaklings, but it's not for macho nuts either."

"My dad is good at fatherhood, but he isn't finished with it yet....I have to grow for a lot more years first."

What is a Father for?

"Fathers are for fixing bikes and when you get your feelings hurt."

"Fathers are for picking daisies with you, but only when the other fathers aren't looking."

What a School for Dads Would Be Like:

"The fathers would learn how to talk to children and how to listen to them. Most of the fathers would be good at it, but a few of them would have to go for extra help"

Why Fathers Are the Most Important People in the World:

"A dad is a kid's best friend."

Do Fathers Treat Sons and Daughters Differently?

"Fathers treat sons better because they got something in common...big egos."

Concerning What a Man Would Be Missing Out on If He Doesn't Get the Chance to Be a Father:

"You would not be able to have heart-to-heart talks with superintelligent people called children."

"You wouldn't ever have a reason to play with toys again."

What Every Father Needs to Know in Order to Get Along with Children:

"You need to remember that you should spend as much time as you can with your children, because pretty sooner or later, they are going to be all grown up and you will be too old to run races against them."

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