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Daddy Love Hardcover – January 8, 2013
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Oates’ daring journey through the labyrinths of criminal minds takes a fierce turn in this unflinching yet restrained tale of the sick symbiosis between an abducted child and his fiendish captor. Dinah, a white woman living in Michigan, defied her nasty mother to marry Whit, a black radio personality. They love and adore their son, Robbie, who is a smart if high-strung five-year-old when a stranger ambushes Dinah in a mall parking lot, grabs her son, and nearly kills her when she desperately runs after his van. Known as Chester Cash, a secretive itinerant preacher and craftsman, this monster calls himself Daddy Love as he conducts his gruesome regime of torture, rape, and reward, which we witness from both his and Robbie’s perspectives over the course of six grim years. For all the horror and sensationalism of her wrenching subject, Oates judiciously charts Robbie’s brutal metamorphosis and Dinah’s resilience in an urgently compelling and drastically revealing study of evil, habitual terror, and survival. HIGH-DEMAND BACK STORY: Expect heated interest from Oates devotees and all readers drawn to strongly wrought, psychologically incisive dark tales. --Donna Seaman
"Wrenching, tightly written and focused . . . a grim examination of how humans cope with unspeakable physical and psychological pain. She illuminates the darkest corners and shows us the startled, troubled creatures hiding there, nursing their wounds, staring back at us, their kin."Cleveland Plain-Dealer
"I haven't met a Joyce Carol Oates story or novel that I didn't like and Daddy Love is no exception."Huntington News
"Haunting, terrifying, disturbing.”Atlantic Wire
Joyce Carol Oates, author of dozens of grim novels, knows the dark side of life better than most and explores it here in a lean and disturbing tale that reverberates after its ending.”Columbus Dispatch
Oates makes us squirm as she forces us to see some of the action through Love’s twisted and warped perspective.”Kirkus Reviews
This unsettling tale showcases Oates’s masterful storytelling.”Publishers Weekly
An urgently compelling and drastically revealing study of evil, habitual terror, and survival.”Booklist
"Daddy Love is a book not to be taken lightly . . . [it] pushes us to confront what lurks behind the front door."New York Journal of Books
"Joyce Carol Oates’s latest book is a horror. As in horror story, frightening, alarmingly realistic. The monsters in Daddy Love are people, not fantastical creatures from the deep or outer space. They are human."PopMatters
Top customer reviews
It was not what I was expecting for sure, but a spellbinder, nonetheless. Readers would enjoy 'ROOM' by Emma Donoghue as a slant on this one.