Written by Derek Munson
Illustrated by Melody Wang
(Cannonball Books, 2013)
Parenting can be challenging, especially when a mother has to do it all by herself. Bad Dad is not an ode to the single mother; rather, it is a recognition of the fact that some fathers require as much supervision as the children. Some people take “kid at heart” too far.
Dad is the one who breaks the bed. Shouldn’t have turned it into a makeshift trampoline. At the very least, he should have just watched. (But don’t we all yearn for bed-bouncing days of yore?)
Dad creates havoc in the kitchen, at the toy store and throughout the neighborhood. Cue title: Bad Dad!
Everyone is in agreement. Perhaps dad should move into the doghouse. Permanently.
Thankfully, he has endearing qualities, too. He’s a homework helper and a hamster provider. Even better, “He banished Brussels sprouts from our house forever.”
Maybe that makes up for an infraction or two.
This is a timely read for Father’s Day, a reminder that no father—no parent (or child)—needs to achieve perfection. Being present can be the greatest present of all. One can pay off the new bed frame in a few months, but those memories of full-on engagement last forever.