Like Father, Like Son

Illustrated by AG Ford
Publisher: Abrams Books for Young Readers (2024)

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A sweet celebration of everything dads and sons do together, from sewing to cooking to bike riding to camping and singing songs to gardening. Along the way, life lessons are passed from father to son, teaching what makes a good person, how to forgive, how to express feelings, and how to show love.

Why I wrote this book:

I was giving a talk about smashing gender stereotypes at the Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art. After my presentation, during the Q&A, a librarian asked, “Do you know of any books that show fathers being gentle with their sons and teaching their sons to be kind?” I didn’t know of any such book, and so I decided to write one!

Excerpt from Like Father, Like Son


When I fell down and scraped my knee,
My daddy took good care of me.

He knelt and looked me in the eye.
“It’s okay, Bud,” he said, “to cry.”



In this comforting picture book, each page turn introduces a different young boy who explains how his dad is special. One father makes clothes for himself and his son, while the next bakes “yummy cakes,” and another shows his son how to grow flowers on their balcony. Shared activities include singing, practicing yoga, and observing birds and other animals. These loving fathers are supportive when their sons break a lamp, cry, have scary dreams, or just feel sad. The final double-page spread features a panoramic lakeside scene where boys and their dads can be found picnicking, fishing, canoeing, setting up campsites, kicking a soccer ball, and enjoying the view. Ford’s appealing illustrations, created with pencil and watercolors, depict diverse families in which boys share experiences with just their fathers. On every two-page spread until the end, each boy expresses himself in a simply worded rhymed couplet, while the final verse affirms the gratitude they share: “And every single day I’m glad / That I’m his son, and he’s my dad.” A natural for Father’s Day.