Like Christopher Buckley writing, at the other end of the life cycle, about his parents' deaths in Losing Mum and Pup, Mr. Lewis buffers any discomfort with urbane polish and storytelling skill. Both books manage to be bright and blithe while describing some of the most earthshaking events in their authors' lives.
The New York Times
From the first laugh-out-loud anecdote about his toddler daughter fending off bully boys with words that make Lewis blush and beam, to his wife's nightmarish postpartum depression, he illustrates the life of a modern-day dad who is, yes, much more hands-on than his father, but who still tries to justify not spending time with his second infant after birth…it's similar to Anne Lamott's wonderful Operating Instructions. It's hard to believe anything could compare to her painfully and wonderfully honest book about the first year of her son's life. But here it is. And in a dad's voice, no less. How so not our father's generation.
The Washington Post
After the birth of his first child, bestselling writer Lewis (Moneyball) felt he was a stranger in a strange land, puzzled at the gap between what he thought he should be feeling and what he actually felt. While he expected to be overcome by joy, he often felt puzzled; expecting to feel worried over a child's illness or behavior, he often felt indifferent. Lewis attempts to capture the triumphs, failures, humor, frustration and exhilaration of being a new father during the first year of each of his three children's lives. In one especially hilarious moment, Lewis is in a hotel pool in Bermuda distantly observing his children. When some older boys start teasing his oldest daughter, the youngest daughter, three years old at the time, lets fly a string of profanities at the top of her lungs. The boys retreat and then regroup for a second attack; when they return, she lets fly another string and tells them that she has peed in the pool, causing the boys to go away. All the while, Lewis watches from afar, too embarrassed to claim this youngster as his own but also proud that she has handled herself so smartly. Although Lewis is correct that his fatherhood moments might be more interesting to him than to anyone else, his reflections capture both the unease and the excitement that fatherhood brings. (June)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
While other authors of parenting memoirs have shown that fathers are vital and needed, Lewis (The Blind Side) here takes pains to celebrate his ineptitude and lack of involvement as a father. Listeners promised an analysis of "the persistent and disturbing gap" between what Lewis was expected to feel and what he actually felt are instead subjected to boring, cranky anecdotes common to new fatherhood. The narration by Dan John Miller (Generation Text) is fine, if a bit bland. Not even those who appreciated Neal Pollack's Alternadad are likely to enjoy this; instead, try Bruce Stockler's I Sleep at Red Lights. [The Norton hc, published in May, was a New York Times best seller.—Ed.]—Douglas C. Lord, Connecticut State Lib., Middletown
Lewis (The Blind Side: Evolution of a Game, 2006, etc.) updates and expands his Slate series on the business of parenting. After the birth of each of his three children, the author promptly drew up notes on how he tried manfully to fill the demanding job of fatherhood. As wife and family CEO Tabitha provided guidance, the generally inattentive and distracted Lewis recorded the nuttiness of raising daughters Quinn and Dixie and their little brother Walker. It's an engaging journal that selectively details how Dad grew up as well, as caution replaced airy hope and emotion displaced rationality. The first child was, for a while, subjected to the vicissitudes of living in Paris and Gallic notions of childrearing; the French experience seems to have made her a cool analyst of any situation. Back stateside, a second girl was born and sibling rivalry erupted. In California, the couple's third child arrived, and Dad elucidates the effects of scant sleep, management of Mom's postpartum melancholy and infant Walker's frightening illness. "If you want to feel the way you're meant to feel about the new baby," writes Lewis, "you need to do the grunt work." Only with eternal vigilance can fathers insure the well-being and personal development of their progeny. Lewis also follows the trail explored by Dr. Cosby and others investigators of fatherhood, and he includes a riff on his personal surgery-no more children are expected in the Lewis household. Brief, clever and frank-a good gift for Father's Day. Author tour to New York, San Francisco, Seattle, Los Angeles, New Orleans, Denver, Portland, Ore., Washington, D.C.
The Onion A.V. Club
Home Game, which was adapted from a series of Slate essays and is an accordingly zippy read, is hilarious but painfully candid,
one man’s uneasy reckoning with the potentially devastating consequences of parenting. It’s unsparing, but Lewis is as honest with himself as he’s been with his subjects. Grade: A-.
The Los Angeles Times
Lewis's style is funny, frank, and engaging, and he gets a lot of comic mileage telling tales at his own expense....it's refreshing to hear a dad describe so vividly the uglier aspects of the job. Christopher Noxon
The New York Times Book Review
Lewis writes memorable, insightful, yet simple and brisk sentences as easily as the rest of us breathe. Marc Tracy
Unabashedly frank, hilarious and sweetly sentimental....a somewhat daring and in many ways groundbreaking book about what it’s like to be a father in modern America....intensely honest. Amy Scribner
Lewis is an insouciant raconteur who can spin out even standard dad stories (about, say, sending a kid to school dressed outlandishly) without making them sound stale. Ann Hulbert
He captures serious issues with a warmth that shows he's a pretty good dad after all. Kyle Smith
Los Angeles Times
“Funny, frank, and engaging. It’s refreshing to hear a dad describe so vividly the uglier aspects of the job.”
“His failings amuse . . . and he captures serious moments with a warmth that shows he’s a pretty good dad after all.”
The Onion AV Club
“Home Game, which was adapted from a series of Slate essays and is an accordingly zippy read, is hilarious but painfully candid, one man’s uneasy reckoning with the potentially devastating consequences of parenting. It’s unsparing, but Lewis is as honest with himself as he’s been with his subjects. Grade: A-.”
Marc Tracy - The New York Times Book Review
“Lewis writes memorable, insightful, yet simple and brisk sentences as easily as the rest of us breathe.”
Amy Scribner - BookPage
“Unabashedly frank, hilarious and sweetly sentimental....a somewhat daring and in many ways groundbreaking book about what it’s like to be a father in modern America....intensely honest.”
Ann Hulbert - Slate
“Lewis is an insouciant raconteur who can spin out even standard dad stories (about, say, sending a kid to school dressed outlandishly) without making them sound stale.”