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  • By David Reinstein
    Jul 24, 2008
    "A heat warming tale of childhood and selfless parental caring" “Willie’s Dad,” written by Special Education teacher and one time Correctional Officer Stanley Williams, takes us into the pained and confused world of a child whose father has been in prison for most of his son’s young life and who doesn’t expect to be released until the boy is grown. With pained and clearly altruistic motives, on one of the boy’s rare visits to see him, accompanied by the child’s mother, Tina, and her boyfriend Duane, he gives his blessing to Tina and Duane to get married and thus afford his son the opportunity to have a real father in his life. Leading up to this moment behind the concrete and steel prison referred to by Tina and Willie simply as “The Place,” Willie’s dad observes the way in which Duane relates to both Willie and his mom. Willie clearly likes and trusts him and he is protective and assuring to both Tina and the boy. Duane keeps his place as Willie’s Dad tells his son what he... More > needs to and shows great respect for this incarcerated father by the way he does so. Later, as the three of them drive away from “The Place,” Duane reinforces his regard for the dad by telling Willie that his father has a lot of good in him. If he didn’t he could never have done what he had just done. He willingly, lovingly and tearfully removed himself from Willie’s parent equation to allow him to have a better father experience than either he or, as it turns out, Duane had ever had. In my practice as a Licensed Clinical Social Worker for a large HMO, I see children from time to time who have a parent in jail. Their resilience and loyalty is sometimes astounding. Most also feel that they have a secret that no one else is supposed to know about. I have never heard, in real life, of the situation so gently and lyrically described by Stanley Williams in this book. I wish I could say that I had! This book is moving into my office tomorrow. It will live there in a small library of books I keep for children on subjects like death, divorce and abuse. “Willie’s Dad” is the kind of book that tells a story rarely told in a form that can be understood and appreciated by youngsters. To a child therapist – or to any caring parent, this is a special resource and treasure. The illustrations are drawn by Mr. Williams’ teaching colleague, Naima Abdul-Haqq. When I say that they look like the drawings of an adolescent, I mean no disrespect because the drawings themselves are a part of what I believe will make this book credible and accessible to the young. I don’t know if this was done deliberately – But I DO know that it works. Writing about fantasy beings and worlds, about playful animals and going potty, about brothers and sisters – All these themes are well and good. They all have their place in the library of children’s literature. Writing about the really hard things in life, though, takes a very special courage and talent and fills a very special and powerful need. Stanley Williams has done a service for children with “Willie’s Dad” and for those of us who are in positions of being helpful to them. This is a brave, touching and profoundly necessary addition to the shelf of books for children. It is one that is intended to help them grasp some of the most confusing and painful things that can and do happen in this world controlled by the adults.< Less
  • By Sabrina LaBord
    Jul 12, 2008
    "Written with a Loving Heart" After reading an article about this book online, I just had to purchase and read it. I'm so glad I did! Willie's Dad will prove to be a welcome tool in aiding young children with incarcerated parents to understand the situation in which they live. With it's simple words and child-like illustrations, this book will be a comfort to children with similar lifestyles to Willie's. They are not alone. I applaud the author for his boldness in penning this book for children and their parents. Hopefully, it will be a door to open the dialogue between parents and children about "The Place".
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Product Details

ISBN
9780615191218
Publisher
Stanley Williams
Published
May 27, 2008
Language
English
Pages
26
Binding
Saddle-stitch Paperback
Interior Ink
Full color
Weight
0.4 lbs.
Dimensions (inches)
8.5 wide x 11 tall
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