The Washington Post
Father Knows Less or: ''Can I Cook My Sister?'': One Dad's Quest to Answer His Son's Most Baffling Questionsby Wendell Jamieson, Patrick Lawlor
Wendell Jamieson's son, Dean, has always had a penchant for…odd questions. "Dad," he asked, apropos of nothing, "what would hurt more—getting run over by a car, or getting/i>
A New York Times editor sets out to answer the peculiarly marvelous questions of his precocious young son—and winds up on an unexpected journey of his own.
Wendell Jamieson's son, Dean, has always had a penchant for…odd questions. "Dad," he asked, apropos of nothing, "what would hurt more—getting run over by a car, or getting stung by a jellyfish?" "Dad, why do policemen like donuts?" "What's it feel like to get stabbed?" "Does Mona Lisa wear shoes?" "Can I cook my sister?"
Because "Dad" was a newspaperman, he decided to seek out answers—and got swept up in the hunt. He spoke to movie directors and ship captains and brain surgeons and stabbing victims and lottery winners and museum curators and politicians and judges and compulsive shoppers and mothers-in-law and magicians—even Yoko Ono and a dominatrix.
But what began as a lark quickly grew into something larger. Blending a charming father-son journey with the surprising, sometimes hilarious questions and answers it spawned, Father Knows Less offers a heartwarming exploration of that childlike curiosity that lives within us all.
The Washington Post
Jamieson, city editor for the New York Times, whose seven-year-old son, Dean, has been in "full-bore question mode" for the past few years, decided that the best strategy for giving Dean the answers was also to give himself a challenge. He would get each answer "from a real person who knows it by heart, whose very livelihood depends on the knowledge" that Jamieson would present without sugarcoating or simplification. The result is a compendium of hilariously insightful questions from kids (age seven and under) with often insightfully hilarious answers from adults ranging from a doctor discussing the difference between somatic and neuropathic pain ("What would hurt more: getting run over by a car or getting stung by a jellyfish?") to a dominatrix explaining Mach 1 air speed ("If you don't hit anything with it, how does a whip make that noise?"). Jamieson helpfully organizes the questions by theme into chapters, although his introductory anecdotes to each, while amusing, should have been drastically reduced to make room for more questions. Too bad this funny and fascinating book is coming out in September: it makes a perfect Father's Day gift for any dad whose child has ever asked, "Why is the sky blue?" or "Why do we have eyebrows?" or "What does 'sexy' mean?" (Sept.)Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
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Meet the Author
Patrick Lawlor has recorded over three hundred audiobooks in just about every genre. He has been an Audie Award finalist several times and has received several AudioFile Earphones Awards. He has won a Publishers Weekly Listen-Up Award, numerous Library Journal and Kirkus starred audio reviews, and multiple Editors' Picks, Top 10, and Year's Best lists.
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