3 out of 4 stars
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Many children with absent or minimally involved fathers grow up believing that their dads must have done something wrong or just didn't want them. While this is true in some cases, is it always true? Or is the other partner to blame sometimes? Vito's story paints a clear picture of such a scenario.
The Diary of a Deadbeat Dad by Vito LaGuido is a diary compilation of a dad who wanted so much to be a part of his daughter's life. Vito's love for his daughter began long before she was born and never waned. He tried to make up for the communication he was denied with his daughter through this diary. In this book, he answers the questions his child would be dying to know and explains the reasons for his limited involvement in her life. Vito also gives her fatherly advice about everything from life, ambition, and family to politics, faith, and even simple things such as parking your car at the mall. This book is filled with a ton of excellent advice and anecdotes that you'll absolutely enjoy.
I appreciated that this book was written in a diary format, with each entry having its own date. This diary is deeply rooted in Christian belief. Even as Vito assures his daughter of his undying love for her, he wants her and everyone else reading this book to believe in the unconditional and eternal love of God. He always had a Bible verse for the points he wanted to buttress. Although some were repeated, each scriptural quotation made sense for whatever he was trying to say at any given moment. Also, he kept emphasizing the message of salvation in different contexts and the damnation in hell for unrepentant souls. Being a Christian myself, I really loved this about the book.
There were a few recurring issues in this book. Two such instances were his child's last name and the disrespect he got from her mom and her family. I saw this as a struggle for identity and significance on the author's part. I could feel his exasperation, frustration, and pain of deprivation, especially concerning his inability to see his daughter as much as he would have loved. I never thought I would understand what it felt like for one's child to be kept away from them until I read this book. The relatability of the author's story was what I loved the most.
There were a few things I didn't like about this diary. Firstly, the author was unnecessarily repetitive. For example, he mentioned several times how he always knew his daughter was his and loved her even though he was open to taking a DNA test. Secondly, he sounded a tad sexist and anti-feminist at times. I understand that modern-day feminism and Christianity may not always agree, but some behaviors, such as men settling all bills while on a date, are antiquated. This is a subjective opinion, though, as there are still many people—men and women alike—who are advocates of traditional chivalry. I was also uncomfortable with the author's use of swear words and profanity in his writing. I felt that this was uncharacteristic of a Christian-themed book. This was what I disliked the most about this book.
I didn't find too many errors while reading The Diary of a Deadbeat Dad. This led me to believe that this book was professionally edited. Owing to the unnecessary repetitions and the use of profanity, I rate this book 3 out of 4 stars. The other issues I had were subjective, so I didn't factor them into my rating. I'll recommend The Diary of a Deadbeat Dad to Christians, especially those who didn't grow up with their biological fathers.
The Diary of a Deadbeat Dad
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