A father-daughter epic

By Tina Jordan
Updated July 15, 2010 at 04:00 AM EDT

Lily King’s first two novels were so finely spun they seemed almost ethereal, but Father of the Rain is a big, powerful punch of a novel, a gripping epic about a father and daughter that plumbs the dark side of a family riven by addiction and mental illness. Daley Amory’s blustering, martini-soaked dad veers between kindness (singing to her in “a low voice scraped out by cigarettes and all the yelling he does”) and brutality (when she asks, sadly, where a beloved new puppy is, he snarls, “It was the ugliest goddamn dog I ever saw”). There’s something so raw and affecting about Daley’s love for her damaged father that the book will linger in your mind long after you’ve finished it. A