I’ve had a subscription to Audible for a couple of months. I’ve discovered that listening to a book while I’m driving makes me WAY less stabby and rage-y, so I figure it’s money well spent.
Not My Father’s Son by Alan Cumming
I stumbled across this book quite by accident while I was trying to find something worthwhile on which to spend my monthly credit. First, let me just say that I heart Alan Cumming. (In case you don’t know who he is, he was – among other stage and screen roles – the villain in Spy Kids and currently plays Eli Gold on The Good Wife). He also has the most adorable Scottish accent – and narrates the book himself.
What drew me to the book in the first place was the genealogical angle. You see, Alan Cumming appeared in Season 7 of the U.K. version of Who Do You Think You Are? The story revolves around the preparation for and discovery of the story of his maternal grandfather, who disappeared in the Far East after World War II.
However, another story is woven through at the same time: the story of Alan’s childhood in Scotland and how he survived the emotional and physical abuse he endured at the hands of his overbearing father … a story to which I could utterly relate.
I’ll be honest. The book is nothing at all like what I expected. I found myself laughing at moments when it was highly inappropriate, but I couldn’t help it. I think that was intentional. Alan’s sense of humor – even in the telling of a fairly dark tale – is refreshing, and keeps the reader from feeling oppressed by the weight of the heavy topics held within.
It was a fairly short book (only 304 pages in the hard copy), so it didn’t take long to finish. I will warn you though – it’s not for the squeamish, as Alan’s recounting of his father’s abuse is unsettling to say the least, and there is quite a bit of language.
I can’t imagine reading it would have the same effect as hearing Alan present his story in his own voice, but if you get the opportunity to read it or listen to it, take it.
Do we share ancestors? Email me: lostancestors AT gmail DOT com
Copyright 2016 - Jenny-ology.com
Disclosure: Some posts may contain affiliate links, which means I may be compensated if you purchase a product using one of those links. There is no additional cost to you. Occasionally I receive free products to review, which will be indicated in my review posts. All opinions are my own, regardless of compensation. See my full disclosures at the link above.