Top Ten Tuesday: Literary Dads

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. If you love books and making lists, this is the meme for you! This week’s topic is:

Father’s Day related Freebie

With Father’s Day just around the corner, this is the perfect opportunity to celebrate dads in literature. As with my Mother’s Day Freebie last month, I have divided my list between five of my best and five of my worst dads; the latter of which I am really glad aren’t mine!

***** BEST *****

~ 5 ~

Ned Stark
A Song of Ice and Fire series by George RR Martin

First, I have gone for Ned Stark from Martin’s epic fantasy series, who impressively has six children with his wife Catelyn. Ned is a brave, noble and honourable man who has raised his children with love, respect and fairness. Sadly though he was just too honourable to last long in this deadly game!

~ 4 ~

Arthur Weasley
Harry Potter series by JK Rowling

Next, I have chosen Arthur Weasley, the muggle-obsessed patriarch of the Weasley clan from Rowling’s magical Harry Potter series. While his wife, Molly, clearly wears the trousers in their relationship, Arthur is a generous, big-hearted man who is adored by his wife and children.

~ 3 ~

Jo Gargery
Great Expectations by Charles Dickens

Next up is the simple, strong and big-hearted Jo Gargery from Dickens’ classic Great Expectations. Technically Jo is the brother-in-law to the tale’s hero Pip, but he loves and delights in Pip as if he was his son. Even when Pip really doesn’t deserve it, Jo patiently continues to love him and heartbreakingly bears his many slights.

~ 2 ~

The Father
The Road by Cormac McCarthy

Almost making it to the top spot, I have ‘the father’ who is desperately trying to keep his young son alive in the dark, dangerous post-apocalyptic world of McCarthy’s The Road. It is both touching and harrowing to see the sheer lengths he will go to for his boy, and we never even learn his name.

~ 1 ~

Daniel Peggotty
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

Top spot however had to go to Daniel Peggotty, the humble but generous fisherman from Dickens’ classic David Copperfield. Peggotty has raised, from a young age, his nephew Ham and his niece Emily as his own. What he lacks in money…he makes up for with a whole lot of love, compassion and an always open door. When his little Emily gets herself in trouble, he leaves all he’s ever known to scour Europe to bring her home.

***** WORST *****

~ 5 ~
Vernon Dursley
Harry Potter series by JK Rowling

First, I have chosen Vernon Dursley the rude, bullying ‘muggle’ uncle of Rowling’s famous boy wizard: Harry Potter. This poor excuse for a dad has little-to-no patience or sympathy for his poor orphaned nephew. While, like his wife, he simpers and panders to his own son Dudley’s every whim, which turns him into an overweight, spoilt bully…pretty much a carbon copy of himself.

~ 4 ~

Denethor II
The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien

Next, I have chosen the mad, bad steward of Gondor, Denethor II, from Tolkien’s epic Lord of the Rings trilogy. Denethor has two sons, but love for only one. His eldest Boromir can do no wrong, whilst the younger Faramir can never do enough. This severe favouritism leads Faramir to take on a suicidal mission in sheer desperation to finally win his father’s love.

~ 3 ~

Franklin Plaskett
We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver

Next, I have chosen Franklin Plaskett, the father of the eponymous Kevin from Shriver’s chilling novel. While his wife Eva is cold and distant to their son, Franklin is the complete, extreme opposite: blindly loving him and refusing to talk or reprimand him for any wrong-doing. They are both ultimately to blame for the monstrous act he goes on to do.

~ 2 ~

Mr Murdstone
David Copperfield by Charles Dickens

Also from Dickens’ classic David Copperfield, but in stark contrast to our winning Daniel Peggotty, we have David’s cruel stepfather, Mr Murdstone. An ambitious, selfish man, who manipulates his way into the heart of David’s young widowed mother. Then he tries to forcefully bend her to his will and exclude David from the new family he wishes to build, but he only succeeds in sending her to an early grave; leaving David at his brutal mercy.

~ 1 ~

Tywin Lannister
A Song of Ice and Fire series by George RR Martin

Top spot had to go to Tywin Lannister, the cold, calculating force behind the rich, powerful House Lannister in Martin’s epic fantasy series. To a mind like his, his children are simply pawns in the game. He forces his daughter Cersei into a loveless marriage, her twin brother Jaime commits regicide for him and he completely shuns his youngest son Tyrion, because as a dwarf he is worthless to him. Bad dad doesn’t really cover it!

What do you think of my choices? What are your best and worst literary dads? Also, please link in the comments if you have taken part in this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic too.


17 thoughts on “Top Ten Tuesday: Literary Dads

  1. Ah so that’s who Tywin Lannister is ! (you left a comment on my version of this top 10 post). Joe in Great Expectations was an inspired choice. Bother, wish I’d thought of him!

  2. Eurgh, Vernon was horrible. He made me so mad! I agree with you on Jo being a great dad, he was humble and kind, always did best for his step-son no matter what the circumstances.

    Great list! 🙂

    1. Destiny, thank you for stopping by and commenting 🙂 Great to hear Denethor and Tywin made it onto your bad dad list too. I look forward to seeing what else is on your list!

  3. Great choices! My mind always goes completely blank on these topics, but you always pick such good ones. Definitely Mr Peggotty, and Jo Gargery is so lovely and wise and faithful. And Denethor! What a horror – I find myself wanting to hiss at him every time I watch the movie…

    1. Thank you and glad we agree about the lovely Peggotty and Gargery, and the villainous Denethor – me and my brother have a running joke when we watch LotR that we shout ‘I’m a nutter!’, in an appropriately silly voice, everything time Denethor comes on the screen 😛

  4. I agree with the choices of Ned Stark, Arthur Weasley, Vernon Dursley, and Tywin Lannister. I trust you chose the others well because I don’t know them.

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