There are lots of reasons to love a book. But one of our favorites is because that book came to us from someone we love. With Father’s Day on the horizon, we want to remember some of the books we fell in love with because of our dads. Whether they come recommended by our dads or just remind us of them, these 8 books are dad-tastic.
Happy Father’s Day!
My dad has always loved the outdoors, as have I. But when it comes to a grueling 2,000+ mile journey through the mountains on foot, we'd both rather read about it than try it. One of the longest and most mythologized hiking trails in the United States, the Appalachian Trail is a beautiful and unique place to escape for an afternoon of travel reading; and Bill Bryson lays out its history, ecology, and inhabitants in fascinating detail. But the thing I always remember about A WALK IN THE WOODS is how funny it is—I laughed out loud at Bryson's descriptions of the outlandish people he meets, his crippling fear of bears, and the advice he receives along his journey. —Lara
A middle-aged duo attempts to trek the 2,200-mile Appalachian Trail in Bill Bryson’s hilarious travel memoir, meeting a motley assortment of fellow hikers and black bears along the way. Robert Redford produces and stars in the film adaptation, with a supporting cast that includes Nick Nolte and Emma Thompson. No word yet on who’s playing the bears.
Release date: September 2, 2015
The computers of 1981 might seem quaint to those of us reading on our phones today, but the race to bring a new computer to market still feels urgent. My dad and I both loved this work of narrative nonfiction, set along Boston's high-tech center fed by the brain trusts at MIT and Harvard, because it was so familiar. My dad worked for Digital Equipment Corporation back in the day and would drive by many of the book's touchstone companies on his way to work. Perfect for anyone who watched Halt and Catch Fire! —Abby
One of the many reasons I love my dad is because he inspired and encouraged my love of reading. I could write a whole list of books that I love because my dad handed them to me, but THE PILLARS OF THE EARTH is the one I most strongly associate with him. And it doesn't stop with this widely beloved epic historical novel. My dad and I can't get enough of Ken Follett's trilogy. So this Father's Day I'm revisiting WORLD WITHOUT END, which returns to the Kingsbridge town at the heart of THE PILLARS OF THE EARTH but two centuries later and with a new cast of extraordinary characters. You don't have to read these books in order, but once you read one, you'll want to read them all. —Taylor
My whole family fell in love with this story of the little horse that could after my dad read this iconic biography—in fact, he still hasn't stopped raving about it. My dad is quick to let anyone know that there are so many amazing facts in this well-researched book that the 2003 movie didn't even touch upon. (We already know the book is always better!) SEABISCUIT is the incredibly inspirational true story about how America found hope during the Great Depression. —Nikki
This is kind of embarrassing, but though this classic reminds me of my dad and that's why I love it, I'm not sure if the connection is even real! I have a vague memory of once asking him what books he loved reading when he was kid, and I'm about 50 percent sure he said this one. But I could also be totally making it up. But he's from Oregon (where Ken Kesey grew up) so maybe I'm not. Dad also likes Jack Nicholson, who played Randle Patrick McMurphy in the movie. So, voila, Dad!
A mordant, wickedly subversive parable set in a mental ward, the novel chronicles the head-on collision between its hell-raising, life-affirming hero Randle Patrick McMurphy and the totalitarian rule of Big Nurse. But McMurphy's revolution against Big Nurse (aka Nurse Ratched) and everything she stands for quickly turns from sport to a fierce power struggle with shattering results.
I can't help myself—one book just isn't enough to do justice to my dad's superb literary taste. Set in Ethiopia and New York, CUTTING FOR STONE is the unforgettable story of twin brothers born of a secret union between an Indian nun and a British surgeon. As they come of age, passion and betrayal will tear them apart, but they can never truly escape their intensely intertwined fates. A must read! —Taylor
Born of a secret union between an Indian woman and a British surgeon and bound together by a preternatural connection and a shared fascination with medicine, twin brothers come of age as Ethiopia hovers on the brink of revolution.
A terrifying firsthand account of the 1996 Mount Everest disaster by master writer Krakauer. My dad loves the adrenaline-pounding action in this book-perfect for all armchair adventurers! —Nikki
Jon Krakauer’s been through the book-to-film process before (2007’s Into the Wild garnered substantial acclaim and award-season buzz), but this time, it’s personal. Into Thin Air details his presence on Mount Everest during the 1996 storm that left eight climbers dead and stranded several others. Adapted under the name Everest and starring Josh Brolin, Robin Wright, Keira Knightley, and Jake Gyllenhaal, it promises to bring the harrowing disaster to life.
Release date: September 25, 2015
My dad was a devout liberal and I have a clear memory of how excited he was when he got his copy of Michael Moore’s STUPID WHITE MEN signed by the author. He came home with a personal note from the author and a story of how Moore spent time talking to him about his work and family. He encouraged me to read Moore’s witty and politically charged work and I have fond memories of sharing our thoughts together (though I wasn’t allowed to bring the book out of the house, lest I lose it—I didn’t). —Kerry