"Harvey is only six when her parents are killed in a car accident. Jason is her only living relation, a gruff loner with a criminal past and a sketchy career. As her uncle, he grudgingly agrees to take her into his less than child-friendly home. This turns out to be the best situation for both of them. Harvey finds a place of love and security, while Jason gets a second chance, and discovers that he can change his own life by caring for someone else. Van Booy’s spare and achingly beautiful prose will engage the reader and affect him or her long after the story is finished." --Sharon— From Sharon's Staff Recommendations
When devastating news shatters the life of six-year-old Harvey, she finds herself in the care of a veteran social worker, Wanda, and alone in the world save for one relative she has never met—a disabled felon, haunted by a violent past he can't escape.
Moving between past and present, Father’s Day weaves together the story of Harvey’s childhood on Long Island and her life as a young woman in Paris. Written in raw, spare prose that personifies the characters, this novel is the journey of two people searching for a future in the ruin of their past.
Father's Day is a meditation on the quiet, sublime power of compassion, and the beauty of simple, everyday things—a breakthrough work from one of our most gifted chroniclers of the human heart.
“In this novel, Van Booy is at his most poignant, showing how redemption can arise from heartbreaking circumstances.”
“There’s so much to enjoy along the way, from Mr. Van Booy’s muted lyricism to the profusion of quiet domestic moments rendered in the strangely captivating way of Andre Dubus.”
In Father’s Day, Van Booy again deftly demonstrates that he is a master at the craft of storytelling.
“Moving, redemptive new novel...The third-person narrative gives both characters their own, distinctive voices that nonetheless change over time. Van Booy creates refreshing, humorous, yet poignant childhood milestones that the two reach with emotional honesty.”
“Van Booy’s great triumph comes in using a family secret to underscore the message that family is as much a choice as a blood tie. Although any reader will find something to love here, someone who has benefited from a perfectly imperfect family will wear the widest smile. This little book with a big heart is suitable not just for Father’s Day, but for any day.”
“[Van Booy’s] facility with word choice and sentence structure can leave a reader swooning...[a] movingly understated drama punctuated with moments of quiet reflection.”
“The moving account of a unique relationship between a parent and child, thrust together under the worst of circumstances. With fine, nuanced prose and much tenderness, Booy guides this unlikely father-daughter pair into a beautiful maturity, showing us with great heart what it really means to be a family.”