"John Wayne: The Genuine Article…The Unseen Archive of an American Legend"
by Michael Goldman; Insight Editions (nonfiction)
In this treasure chest of a volume are dozens of never-before-seen photos and much more: removable movie posters and pullout mementos from the late actor’s life, including replicas of his driver’s license and passport, and handwritten notes from notables such as Joan Crawford, President Jimmy Carter and Sammy Davis Jr. Readers can rest assured these are all the genuine article, since the contents were provided by John Wayne Enterprises, run by the megastar’s son, Ethan Wayne.
If the dad in question is a suspense addict (and which of them is not?), then the latest thriller from acclaimed Norwegian novelist Jo Nesbø should be next on his to-read list. Centered on an in-broad-daylight assassination during a Salvation Army Christmas concert, The Redeemer follows investigator Harry Hole, Nesbø’s popular protagonist, on a dangerous chase to find the killer.
by Daniel Kahneman; Farrar, Straus & Giroux (nonfiction)
For the cerebral father, a dissection of human reason and judgment by Nobel prize-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman. The Princeton prof’s theory is that the mind consists of two systems—one conscious and analytical, the other quick and intuitive—and we use both to gather information and make decisions. When Dad wows the crowd with all this at the next family dinner, he’ll have you to thank.
"Sailing Essentials: All You Need to Know When You’re At Sea"
by Steve Sleight, DK Publishing (nonfiction)
With summer weather comes boating, so supply him with this invaluable on-the-water guide. Useful to both newbie sailors and expert hands, Sailing offers step-by-step instruction on basic maneuvers, anchoring, mooring and even engine care and repair. Your dad may even admit that he probably could have used this book a long time ago.
A literary crime novel, Evil and the Mask also functions as a meditation on the father-child relationship. A young boy learns that his dad created him to “be a cancer in this world”—that is, to wreak havoc and inflict pain upon the human race. From that point on it’s a struggle between the father, grooming his son to become a destructive force, and the boy, struggling to carve out a different fate. While most parents certainly won’t identify with this evil dad, the book offers fascinating insight into how kids can both acquiesce in and resist the ways their family shapes them.