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Captain Dad: The Manly Art Of Stay-At-Home Parenting Hardcover – May 7, 2013
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“A hilarious, insightful look at the splendors (?) of parenting through the eyes of a stay-at-home dad. Spoiler alert: He survives!”
“An absolutely delightful addition to the parenting canon from ‘Captain Dad’ (don’t call him ‘Mr. Mom’) Pat Byrnes. Captain Dad illustrates (literally, with a dozen or so laugh-out-loud cartoons) the ‘manly art’ of stay-at-home parenting. He pulls it off with great wit, warmth, and some bombshell revelations. Never would I think of a jockstrap as part of the parenting uniform or that (outrageously!) dads don’t have ‘potty parity’ in diaper changing rooms. And as a mom, this is a must-have book for sweet vindication alone. Captain Dad confirms that when it comes to fulltime parenting, wimps need not apply. Welcome, Captain Dad, to our tired, unwashed, unpaid, and undervalued army. Now, let’s get you some yoga pants!”
—Linda Keenan, author of Suburgatory
About the Author
It may not take a rocket scientist to draw cartoons—or raise kids—but Detroit native Pat Byrnes (a.k.a. Captain Dad) erred on the side of caution by getting his Aerospace degree at the University of Notre Dame. He joined General Dynamics–Convair as the first pre-design engineer (the brainstorming guys) they had ever taken directly out of undergrad. Despite this privilege, he knew his calling was elsewhere. For a time, he honed his creative skills writing ad copy for big agencies like W. B. Doner in Detroit and J. Walter Thompson in Chicago. He scripted ads for everything from cheese to menstrual relief products, and won buckets of awards, from the Addy to the Clio. During this time, he moonlighted with experimental comedy acts, to much critical acclaim (even notoriety) in Chicago’s then crackling night club scene. He left writing ads for reading them as a voiceover actor. Between auditions, he finally found time to answer his above-mentioned calling: Cartooning. Since 1998, Pat has been a regular contributor to The New Yorker. Before dad duties slashed his working hours, he was also a staple in Reader’s Digest, Wall Street Journal and America Magazine. For three years, he created the syndicated comic strip, “Monkeyhouse.” He has won the National Cartoonists Society Award for advertising illustration, and awards for his sonnets. He also writes musicals. And he used to paint when he had the time. His gag cartoons appeared for the first time in book form in What Would Satan Do? and again in Because I’m the Child Here and I Said So. His most recent book is Eats Shoots & Leaves—Illustrated Edition by Lynne Truss (Gotham 2008) of which he is the illustrator. More recently, he is the inventor of the Smurks; initially intended to be an iPhone app to help friends share their feelings better on their handheld devices, Smurks is now being embraced as a powerful new tool to help people with autism connect with their emotions and to help neuroscientists study the brain’s responses to nonverbal facial expressions.
Pat is married to Lisa Madigan, who, in addition to being charming and beautiful, is also the Attorney General of the State of Illinois. They live a surprisingly quiet life with their delightful daughters, Rebecca and Lucy, on the banks of the Chicago River.
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Top Customer Reviews
The book comes from the less common perspective of a stay-at-home dad who has been raising two girls while his wife works as the state Attorney General. The author is a cartoonist, which means he works from home with flexible hours. It was natural for him to stay at home with the children. As a first-time parent, the task is a lot more than he bargained for, in demanding and delightful ways. As a dad, there are certain barriers (where are the baby changing tables in public? Mostly in the ladies' room, not very helpful for dads) and awkward situations (joining playgroups or going to the park as the only dad among lots of moms) that provide both humor and practical advice. I especially liked the idea of a dad just leaning his back against a wall as if sitting and using his lap as a changing table--that's the sign of a really tough man.
The book reads a little bit like the best of his blog posts, but they are woven together well to create a larger whole. The book can be read in bite-size chunks over several days or weeks, giving the reader a chance to enjoy it every day for quite a while. It is full of illustrations too, including some cartoons that originally appeared in the New Yorker. They are delightfully whimsical and add to the comic punch of the writing.
The book is very entertaining for dads and moms, validating the difficulty of raising children in our world and the bemusement needed to deal with how the world looks at us parents, stay-at-home or not.
The cartoons in "Captain Dad" are wonderful! They the author's brilliant way of reminding readers to not take things too seriously, and to accept the laughter that comes with being a parent. I found them warm, easy to identify with, and very reassuring. As is the book overall!
This book is like talking about parenting with some buddies over a few beers during a rare night out.
This book is too funny! Vey well written I thought it was so cute! This book contains so much useful information! I got it and I have read it but now my husband wants to read it also and is wanting to give a review! I think it's great! I feel a father has a huge part in a child's life whether he is a stay at home dad or working father! My husband is not a sty at home dad but I think he could deinately benefit from reading this and I think he'll deinately like it too! So glad I had the opportunity to read captain dad! So great! Keep up the good work!!!!