The Father's Tale

The Father's Tale

A Novel

Book - 2011
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"Canadian bookseller Alex Graham is a middle-age widower whose quiet life is turned upside down when his college-age son disappears without any explanation or trace of where he has gone. With minimal resources, the father begins a long journey that takes him for the first time away from his safe and orderly world. As he stumbles across the merest thread of a trail, he follows it in blind desperation, and is led step by step on an odyssey that takes him to fascinating places and sometimes to frightening people and perils. Through the uncertainty and the anguish, the loss and the longing, Graham is pulled into conflicts between nations, as well as the eternal conflict between good and evil. Stretched nearly to the breaking point by the inexplicable suffering he witnesses and experiences, he discovers unexpected sources of strength as he presses onward in the hope of recovering his son--and himself"--Jacket.
Publisher: San Francisco : Ignatius Press, c2011
ISBN: 9780898708158
089870815X
Branch Call Number: Fiction OBr
Characteristics: 1076 p. ; 21 cm

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mjfield
Sep 30, 2016

I enjoyed The Father's Tale to a surprising degree. Though it weighs in at a hefty 1076 pages, it held my interest all the way through. When you find a book you can't put down, you want it to be long.
The story concerns the improbable adventures of Alexander Graham, a mild-mannered, bookish Canadian widower and father of two, who lives a quiet, safe, predictable life above his small town bookstore, surrounded by his books, his lingering grief over his departed wife, and his deeply rooted Roman Catholic faith. When his younger son, a student at Oxford, joins a religious cult and disappears with no trace but two cryptic phone calls, he leaves his quiet life in rural Ontario and, never having ventured further than Toronto, departs for England to find his son. His journey will take him from England to Finland to Russia, where he is set upon a series of cold trails and misadventures that go from highly improbable to beyond belief. Along the way, he is existentially challenged in his faith, his finances, and his fatherhood.
I don't want to give the details away, but suffice it to say that once you get a hundred pages in, you won't be able to put it down, and you'll wish it were 2,000 pages long before the end.

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