Book - 2017
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Father Greg Lockwood is unlike any Catholic priest you have ever met, a man who lounges in boxer shorts, loves action movies, and whose constant jamming on the guitar reverberates "like a whole band dying in a plane crash in 1972." His daughter is an irreverent poet who long ago left the Church's country. When an unexpected crisis leads her and her husband to move back into her parents' rectory, their two worlds collide. In Priestdaddy, Lockwood interweaves emblematic moments from her childhood and adolescence, from an ill-fated family hunting trip and an abortion clinic sit-in where her father was arrested to her involvement in a cultlike Catholic youth group, with scenes that chronicle the eight-month adventure she and her husband had in her parents' household after a decade of living on their own. Lockwood details her education of a seminarian who is also living at the rectory, tries to explain Catholicism to her husband, who is mystified by its bloodthirstiness and arcane laws, and encounters a mysterious substance on a hotel bed with her mother. Lockwood pivots from the raunchy to the sublime, from the comic to the deeply serious, exploring issues of belief, belonging, and personhood. Priestdaddy is an entertaining, unforgettable portrait of a deeply odd religious upbringing, and how one balances a hard-won identity with the weight of family and tradition.
Publisher: New York :, Riverhead Books,, [2017]
Copyright Date: ©2017
ISBN: 9781594633737
Branch Call Number: 811.6 LO
Characteristics: 336 pages ; 24 cm
Alternative Title: Priest daddy


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Feb 29, 2020

I snorted and laughed out loud so many times while reading this book! Lockwood writes prose like a poet, and whether it fits every reader's preferred style or not, it strikes me as a work of particular genius.

Since I grew up Catholic in the Midwest within the same decade as the author, I find her rendering of traditionalist church life to be fascinating. Lockwood examines her world from an anthropological perspective and somehow manages to show loving reverence for her family all the while comedically examining the extraordinarily uncommon* and deeply religious environment that raised her. The result is a memoir that is compassionate, quirky, playful, haunting, hilarious, and otherwise entirely impossibly to describe.

*One of the things that really puzzled me is that Lockwood never dives much into church politics to emphasize just how rare her father's priesthood (and therefore her life) is. See:

Jan 27, 2020

Laugh out loud funny in places. Odd, yet honest. Loved the beginning, but somehow the thought organization seemed to deteriorate as the book reached it closure. An interesting read.

Jan 13, 2020

I did not enjoy this book at all. It was funny at first, but then it was just random thoughts thrown on a page. I found myself speed reading it just to get through it and by the time I was done I just wanted to burn it. Luckily I was reading a digital copy...

Sep 24, 2019

Maybe the funniest and most insightful book I've read about growing up religious.

Feb 25, 2019

The premise of this memoir is what makes it interesting, but too much of the book relied on the eccentricities of her father without really delving into what her family was like. Her siblings are non-entities. Her mother is a worrier, and that’s the most we learn about her. I would have liked to know what the parishioners at their church thought about their Catholic priest having a family.

Feb 09, 2019

Amazing, weird, challenging, inspiring, laugh-out-loud, teary, impactful book -- unlike any other I have read. Learned a lot about myself as I related (or not) to the author's glimpse into her unusual family life. Very impressed with the "positive" spin put on attitude and behavior experiences that many times get stuck in negative energy. Sets a powerful example of the blessings that come from embracing the "gift" in troublesome situations.

Jan 31, 2019

it's hard for me to rate this below a 4, because i appreciate the author's humor and wit and perspective so much. her writing itself is also beautiful, yet therein comes the challenges as sentences are often a bit over the top and it's very easy to put this book down. that said, it's also easy to pick this book up and in some ways extending the read time and treating chapters like short stories may add to the reading ease. you'll laugh out loud and appreciate the little things throughout this. there's a layer or cynicism combined with open-mindedness, and for me, i'm most oft in agreement with patricia lockwood so i enjoyed cover to cover... just with pause and delay.

Jan 23, 2019

austin klein i think.

Dec 14, 2018

One of my favorite books I have ever read. I love her voice and humor so much. I love all the bits of poems throughout. As a kid who grew up in a religious household with parents who were secretly artsy, I have never felt more normal than reading this memoir.

Jun 18, 2018

Lockwood can certainly write and has a wicked sense of humour, but the first half of the book didn't really speak to me. I grew tired of hearing about her father's underwear - or lack of underwear. But then she clobbered me with the second half of "Priestdaddy" - which examined religion and family in a much deeper and compassionate fashion. I wound up really liking her voice and this book. Recommended - maybe particularly for those who take their religion in a very certain and dogmatic fashion?

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