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Father of the Rain by Lily King

'Father of the Rain' By Lily King

A review by Wendy Smith

Lily King won a well-deserved raft of honors, including the prestigious Whiting Writer's Award, for her first two novels, The Pleasing Hour and The English Teacher, and her latest is just as sensitive and perceptive. Indeed, this harrowing chronicle of Daley Amory's 34-year struggle to come to grips with her impossible father may be her best yet.

It's not just that Gardiner Amory is an alcoholic with a nasty temper. It's not just that he's a bigot who comments when he sees Daley with a book by Judy Blume, "You're always reading the Jews. Just like your mother." It's not just that he mocks any achievement of Daley's or her older brother Garvey's that doesn't involve sports. It's not just that he reads aloud an explicit letter in Penthouse Forum to his 11-year-old daughter and the 6-year-old daughter of his new wife Catherine, goes skinny-dipping in front of them and lets them see him fondling Catherine's breasts in the pool.

The worst thing about this adult man with the self...

Previously Reviewed by Chicago Tribune
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Anthill by Edward Osborne Wilson

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Father of the Rain by Lily King

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