Mysteries of My Father

Fleming, Thomas

Published by Wiley
ISBN 10: 1630269204 / ISBN 13: 9781630269203
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Synopsis: A son comes of age in a fiercely political world

"Thomas Fleming gives us an unforgettable story about an immigrant family--his family--as it struggles to find a place in the American century. He shares with us the dreams and heartaches of his parents, and, in the end, he reminds us of the mysterious and forgiving power of love."
--Terry Golway, author of The Irish in America

"A truly moving story of a lifelong duel between father and son, Mysteries of My Father also vibrates with the great good humor that grows out of ward politics, and pulses with the heartfelt drama of a family just getting by. There were some bad times in the Fleming family story, but Tom Fleming prevails to the good times, and the best time is left to the reader. What a wonderful time I had reading this book."
--Dennis Smith, author of the Report from Engine Co. 82 and Report from Ground Zero

"A well-written, fascinating political history."
--Margaret Truman, author of Murder at Union Station

"With a historian's fidelity and a poet's empathy, Tom Fleming has created a textured study of three generations of Irish-Americans, whose clashing spiritual values inform their integration into New Jersey's social and political hierarchy. Mysteries of My Father is an American classic achieved by a master storyteller's talents for exploring the tensions and bonds between a father and his sons. Among the literary wonders of this brisk and moving memoir is the father's emergence as a seminal American character--brusque and pragmatic, yet capable of expected tenderness to his sons."
--Sidney Offit, author of Memoir of the Bookie's Son

"If you care about what it means to be an Irish-American, or about New Jersey political history, or about the relationships between fathers and sons, or about wonderful writing, run--don't walk--out to buy Tom Fleming's Mysteries of My Father."
--Nick Acocella, publisher of Politifax

From the Inside Flap: In 1998, a man probing France's Argonne Forest with a metal detector discovered a gold onyx ring. On the inside was the inscription "From Mayor Frank Hague to Sheriff Teddy Fleming, 1945," which helped track down the owner, historian and novelist Thomas Fleming. Thirty years earlier, he had lost the ring while exploring the blood-soaked battlefield where his father had won a lieutenant's commission in World War I. Fleming flew to France and had the ring placed back on his finger, in the exact place where he had lost it.

Back home, Fleming realized it would take more than a trip to France to understand the man who had originally accepted that ring and the mayor who had given it to him. Teddy Fleming represented something large and formidable that the writer had tried to deal with in a half dozen novels. Was it finally time to confront the whole truth without the disguises of fiction?

In Mysteries of My Father, we watch Teddy Fleming rise in Frank Hague's bare-knuckled Irish-American political machine, which dominated Jersey City and the state of New Jersey for thirty-two years. Thomas Fleming tells both the public and the private stories—such as his parents' violent quarrels, his mother's shame at being Irish, and her embittered attempts to make her son an antagonist against the man she publicly admired and privately disdained.

Again and again, the son found himself baffled by his discoveries about his father, including the heartbreaking poem "My Buddy" that this tough laconic man hung on his bedroom wall and "The Guy in the Glass," hidden in his bureau drawer, about how every man "in his struggle for self" must somehow keep his self-respect. At the heart of the drama is a riveting cry that the sixteen-year-old son elicited from Teddy Fleming when he said he did not love him: "You and your brother. You're all I've got."

From Ireland's County Mayo to Jersey City's City Hall, Fleming's gripping narrative encapsulates the pride and the pain of being Irish in the first decades of the twentieth century. More than a history of the Irish in America, more than a family saga, Mysteries of My Father opens your heart to a son's struggle to survive and ultimately heal his wounds through hard-won understanding and love.

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Title: Mysteries of My Father
Publisher: Wiley
Binding: Hardcover
Book Condition: New

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Book Description Wiley, 2005. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****. A son comes of age in a fiercely political world Thomas Fleming gives us an unforgettable story about an immigrant family--his family--as it struggles to find a place in the American century. He shares with us the dreams and heartaches of his parents, and, in the end, he reminds us of the mysterious and forgiving power of love. --Terry Golway, author of The Irish in America A truly moving story of a lifelong duel between father and son, Mysteries of My Father also vibrates with the great good humor that grows out of ward politics, and pulses with the heartfelt drama of a family just getting by. There were some bad times in the Fleming family story, but Tom Fleming prevails to the good times, and the best time is left to the reader. What a wonderful time I had reading this book. --Dennis Smith, author of the Report from Engine Co. 82 and Report from Ground Zero A well-written, fascinating political history. --Margaret Truman, author of Murder at Union Station With a historian s fidelity and a poet s empathy, Tom Fleming has created a textured study of three generations of Irish-Americans, whose clashing spiritual values inform their integration into New Jersey s social and political hierarchy. Mysteries of My Father is an American classic achieved by a master storyteller s talents for exploring the tensions and bonds between a father and his sons. Among the literary wonders of this brisk and moving memoir is the father s emergence as a seminal American character--brusque and pragmatic, yet capable of expected tenderness to his sons. --Sidney Offit, author of Memoir of the Bookie s Son If you care about what it means to be an Irish-American, or about New Jersey political history, or about the relationships between fathers and sons, or about wonderful writing, run--don t walk--out to buy Tom Fleming s Mysteries of My Father. --Nick Acocella, publisher of Politifax. Seller Inventory # APC9781630269203

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Book Description Wiley. Hardcover. Condition: New. 352 pages. Dimensions: 9.2in. x 6.1in. x 0.8in.A son comes of age in a fiercely political worldThomas Fleming gives us an unforgettable story about an immigrant family--his family--as it struggles to find a place in the American century. He shares with us the dreams and heartaches of his parents, and, in the end, he reminds us of the mysterious and forgiving power of love. --Terry Golway, author of The Irish in AmericaA truly moving story of a lifelong duel between father and son, Mysteries of My Father also vibrates with the great good humor that grows out of ward politics, and pulses with the heartfelt drama of a family just getting by. There were some bad times in the Fleming family story, but Tom Fleming prevails to the good times, and the best time is left to the reader. What a wonderful time I had reading this book. --Dennis Smith, author of the Report from Engine Co. 82 and Report from Ground ZeroA well-written, fascinating political history. --Margaret Truman, author of Murder at Union StationWith a historians fidelity and a poets empathy, Tom Fleming has created a textured study of three generations of Irish-Americans, whose clashing spiritual values inform their integration into New Jerseys social and political hierarchy. Mysteries of My Father is an American classic achieved by a master storytellers talents for exploring the tensions and bonds between a father and his sons. Among the literary wonders of this brisk and moving memoir is the fathers emergence as a seminal American character--brusque and pragmatic, yet capable of expected tenderness to his sons. --Sidney Offit, author of Memoir of the Bookies SonIf you care about what it means to be an Irish-American, or about New Jersey political history, or about the relationships between fathers and sons, or about wonderful writing, run--dont walk--out to buy Tom Flemings Mysteries of My Father. --Nick Acocella, publisher of Politifax This item ships from multiple locations. Your book may arrive from Roseburg,OR, La Vergne,TN. Hardcover. Seller Inventory # 9781630269203

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Book Description Wiley, 2005. Hardback. Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book ***** Print on Demand *****.A son comes of age in a fiercely political world Thomas Fleming gives us an unforgettable story about an immigrant family--his family--as it struggles to find a place in the American century. He shares with us the dreams and heartaches of his parents, and, in the end, he reminds us of the mysterious and forgiving power of love. --Terry Golway, author of The Irish in America A truly moving story of a lifelong duel between father and son, Mysteries of My Father also vibrates with the great good humor that grows out of ward politics, and pulses with the heartfelt drama of a family just getting by. There were some bad times in the Fleming family story, but Tom Fleming prevails to the good times, and the best time is left to the reader. What a wonderful time I had reading this book. --Dennis Smith, author of the Report from Engine Co. 82 and Report from Ground Zero A well-written, fascinating political history. --Margaret Truman, author of Murder at Union Station With a historian s fidelity and a poet s empathy, Tom Fleming has created a textured study of three generations of Irish-Americans, whose clashing spiritual values inform their integration into New Jersey s social and political hierarchy. Mysteries of My Father is an American classic achieved by a master storyteller s talents for exploring the tensions and bonds between a father and his sons. Among the literary wonders of this brisk and moving memoir is the father s emergence as a seminal American character--brusque and pragmatic, yet capable of expected tenderness to his sons. --Sidney Offit, author of Memoir of the Bookie s Son If you care about what it means to be an Irish-American, or about New Jersey political history, or about the relationships between fathers and sons, or about wonderful writing, run--don t walk--out to buy Tom Fleming s Mysteries of My Father. --Nick Acocella, publisher of Politifax. Seller Inventory # APC9781630269203

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