Father of the Man by Robert Mooney
A Novel

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A stunning literary debut: a powerful love story informed by ghostly
demarcations between World War II and the Vietnam War.

It's just after dawn, June 6, 1982: "Dutch" Potter, an upstate New York bus
driver and father of a soldier who's been missing in action in Vietnam for twelve
years, snaps and dons his World War II army uniform, collects passengers aboard his BC Transit bus, then veers off route, careening into the woods of northern Pennsylvania, where he holds seven hostages to his one demand: return my son.

This wild ride, taking us from New York to Normandy to Southeast Asia by way of Dutch's memories, hopes, and despair, is rendered in mesmerizingly lyrical prose-ranging in tone from bardic to barfly-and forms a brilliantly layered and nuanced narrative. As FBI helicopters whir and command centers are jerry-built, Dutch readies himself for an armed confrontation with federalauthorities, while his family and close-knit community are thrown into sudden and dramatic action. Father of the Man reveals itself to be a love story: not only between father and son, but between husband and wife, mother and child, the living and the dead.

Dutch Potter takes us, along with his hapless passengers, beyond the safe, the ordinary, to a heart of darkness.

About Robert Mooney

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Robert Mooney was born in Rochester, New York, and educated at Boston College and Binghamton University. He currently teaches literature and writing at Washington College, where he is the director of the O'Neill Literary House. His short fiction has appeared in many journals and magazines. He and his wife, Maureen, and their two children divide their time between Chestertown, Maryland, and Binghamton, New York.
Published October 22, 2002 by Pantheon. 240 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Father of the Man

Kirkus Reviews

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Reported as missing in action, Jom became an angry, hungry ghost tormenting Dutch, who never for a minute could accept the possibility that his son might be dead.

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Publishers Weekly

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Mooney adds an unusual twist to the usual hostage standoff plot in his debut novel, a solid effort in which a dispirited, deranged bus driver from Binghamton, N.Y., hijacks his vehicle and demands to see his son, a Vietnam vet who has been MIA for a dozen years, in return for the release of the s...

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