Friday, June 15, 2018

A Flurry of Fictional Fathers



With Father’s Day coming up this Sunday, I was thinking about fathers in some of my favorite books. There’s Mr. Bennett in Pride and Prejudice, for example. He’s not a great success as a parent, in my opinion. But Elizabeth loves him nonetheless.
A favorite of mine is Jonathan Chawley in Georgette’s Heyer’s A Civil Contract Mr. Chawley is one of her great characters. A vulgar “Cit,” he blusters and rages, but he’s a complete softie inside. He loves giving gifts and can be reduced to blubbering by his love for his daughter. Yet his employees quake in terror at the thought of his wrath.
I created a strong father figure in my Duke’s Sons series. The duke is mostly off screen through the books, but he enters the plot in The Duke Knows Best.

He smiled at her, and Verity’s breath caught. The Duke of Langford’s wholehearted smile was blindingly charming. It subsumed the smiles of all his handsome sons, and surpassed them. “You’re very welcome to our family, you know,” he said. “And we will make sure you get to join us.”
Verity found she couldn’t speak. She coughed to remind her throat of its proper function. “Th-thank you.”
Olivia appeared at Verity’s side. “Will you try Herr Grossmann, Your Grace? He’s ready for another…subject.”
“I believe you almost said victim, Miss Townsend.”
“I would never be so clumsy.”
“Wouldn’t you? Ah, there’s Conyingham. If you young ladies will excuse me.” He gave them an exquisite half bow and walked away.
Olivia watched him go. “You know those tiresome old men who leer at one and say, ‘If only I were thirty years younger’?”
“Yes?” replied Verity.
“Well, if only he was.”
Verity laughed.

Who are some of your favorite fictional fathers?

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