Fatherhood by Marcus Berkmann - review by James Delingpole

James Delingpole

Who’s Your Daddy



Vermilion 282pp £10.99 order from our bookshop

When I was reading Marcus Berkmann's Fatherhood on the tube, I kept having to make sure the cover was flat against my knees so that no one could tell what it was. Otherwise, I risked ‘Ah, how sweet – he's going to have his first baby’ looks from all the mums in the carriage and patronising, ‘Welcome to the third circle of hell, matey’ looks from all the dads. And I might have had to keep giving them looks back conveying: ‘Actually no. Been there, done that already, ta very much.’

You might believe this is a silly way of thinking. But if you do, you clearly haven't been through baby-parenthood. Baby-parenthood is the period of your life which lasts between the birth of your first child roughly up until the third birthday of your last. After you've emerged from the tunnel at the other end (blinking into the light), you suddenly realise just how self-obsessed, baby-obsessed, warped and dreary the parents of young children are. And just how similarly awful, until very recently, you were too. If you have any sense (though the brooding urge never quite dies completely), you'll decide not to go back to that dark and terrible

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