BOOK REVIEW: What a Son Needs From His Dad, by Michael A. O’Donnell, PhD

Perhaps because of the PhD, Michael A. O’Donnell’s latest offering, What A Son Needs from His Dad: How a Man Prepares His Sons for Life is a re-working of better works found on nearby shelves at the Christian bookstore, library or worse, Goodwill.  Mine will undoubtedly end up at the latter.  Full of labeling tricks, I found it to be pedantic.  Ten short chapters (the book is only a scant 141 pages, no graphics), which seem to follow William Bennett‘s focus points, but with none of the depth, classical touches or inspiration.  One bright light: the tool he offers to work through the Lord’s Prayer on p.75 seems a vital element for spiritual growth, and the only piece of the book I would recommend.

Overall, this book is “preaching to the choir:” godly dads who already want to be better fathers, but it could not reach those who might need beginner’s practical help and simple uplifting chapters (something Dobson or Robert Lewis, or Bennett).  No chance for any mom, either.  In short, academic fluff to keep up the degree.  I have a better idea: save the time buying, reading and processing this dull book, and invest in a respected dad within your church who is humbly trying to raise godly kids.  Better yet, find 3 and start a Bible study or encouragement group!

This quite candid review was made possible by Bethany House Publishers, in return for my advance paper copy.  You are free to join their reviewers too!

 

Resources:

Michael A. O’Donnell

Focus on the Family

christian dad

christian fatherhood: crosswalk article

There are scant resources that pop up with this topic…hmmmm.

 

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