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Bobblehead Dad: 25 Life Lessons I Forgot I Knew

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  128 ratings  ·  38 reviews
An inspirational account of one dad's extraordinary journey through cancer, fatherhood, and several forgotten life lessons--and the discovery of one life-changing gift. Jim Higley was a forty-year-old bobblehead. Just like those collectible figurines with oversized, bouncy heads, he'd put on a smiling face and bobble through his hectic, overflowing days.

Higley's bobbling
Paperback, 201 pages
Published June 1st 2011 by Greenleaf Book Group LLC
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Average rating 3.92  · 
Rating details
 ·  128 ratings  ·  38 reviews

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Apr 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Most adults
Recommended to Darlene by: First-Reads, GoodReads
Shelves: memoir, first-reads
Yay! I won this book on GoodReads First-Reads! I can hardly wait to start reading it. It looks like fun.

* * *

This was a delightful read about some very unfortunate life and death issues. For an ARC it was quite clean, easy to read. If there were mistakes I never noticed them. But dropping into another's life and thoughts helped me see things through another's eyes. That's is how I perceived this book. Jim Higley tells his story of present and past in such a seamless way that I feel a part of his
Apr 29, 2011 rated it really liked it
I won this book in Goodreads First Reads.

It was a really great and inspiring read and I'm so happy to have had the privilege of reading it. For an ARC is was really well done, easy to read, spelling and grammar were good and most of all it was difficult to put down.

It's easy to forget how lucky we really are and how much our parents really know until it's too late. It was amazing to see life through another persons eyes as he battled with a life threatening disease and read as he battled it to
May 16, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own
This is a truly inspiring story of man that has been diagnosed with cancer and then after surgery on a summer of recovering he is hit by many memories from his childhood. As he reflects on all of the loving memories of his life he is faced with a realization that he has been missing more in his life then he has been actually enjoying and he is forced to decided what he will do with the rest of his life.
I would also like to say I have had to many of my family members die from cancer and my dad
Apr 30, 2011 rated it liked it
This book has a lot of really great messages. It is, however, super dramatically written, and that always makes me a little cynical. Jim Higley uses dramatic writing techniques--like parenthetical dashes--too often, and in places where they don't really make sense grammatically.

He indents--the way writers do for emphasis--far, far too often.

For sentences that aren't actually emphatic.

Like this one.

That is my primary complaint. As far as the story goes, it's nothing earth-shattering, but it is
May 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
Bobblehead Dad is not only a story about a man who is diagnosed with cancer and his recovery, it is a story of love and a challenge to love for today. Jim Higley has a way to your heart with his memories from his childhood and entwining them with the present day. A marriage of the past and present that will have you misty eyed by chapter 3 and laughing and shaking your head just picturing the scene in chapter 19. Bobblehead Dad is a must read for anyone who has fought the fight or been a ...more
Julie Lorraine
May 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Bobblehead Dad is an inspirational, fun to read book. It is a quick read that you will not want to put down. When it is finished, you wish it would go on. In a witty way, the book takes you through the authors cancer journey with each step relating back to a childhood memory. It is upbeat, positive and funny! It definitely will make you a better person when you are done reading it. A great idea for Father's Day!
May 23, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Bobblehead Dad was a cover to cover read; I could not put it down. I loved how the author wove his childhood experiences into his present day fight against cancer. Having lost family & friends to cancer, I really related to this book. For anyone who has personal, or knows anyone who has battled cancer, this is a must read. You will laugh, cry, and end feeling lighter & uplifted. Truly inspiring!
Chitoka Webb
Jun 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A story about survival that will inspire you. This is one of those books that you will remember fifteen years from now.
Before you know it, Jims confidence and determination to live as seeped into that portion of doubt that lives within all of us causing it to pulverize. I can assure you, if you read it once you will find yourself reading it twice.
Helen Smith
Mar 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Great Book

This is an amazing way to think through life lessons and see the wonderful traditions of a family. The book is extremely well-written.
A great read from a former schoolmate.
Bobblehead Dad by Jim Higley is a nonlinear memoir told in the form of 25 lesson the author has learned during his life. In his forties, the author was diagnosed with prostate cancer and had to take stock of his life, the legacy he was given by his family, and the legacy he would leave to his children. He described himself as a bobblehead in the introduction, a plastic figure who always had a constant smile no matter what influences or stimuli were thrown at him and simply bobbled throughout his ...more
Apr 29, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nook, own
Words can heal. They can surprise. They can encourage. It doesnt matter if they are handwritten or if a Hallmark had to be leaned on for a little help. Words matter. Because they remind each of us who we are to the people in our lives. Arent these just wonderful words to reflect upon on? These words are just a few of the wonderful statements that Jim enlightens his readers with as we traveled back in time with Jim, when he was a child growing up with his brothers and his parents and also as he ...more
Aug 02, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: cancer
I was interested in reading this book, in part because of my daughter's battle with leukemia. This book was about a 44 year old man battling prostrate cancer, but the emotions brought up with a cancer diagnosis are universal.

The life lessons learned in this book are nothing we all haven't heard before. Enjoy life to its fullest, cherish every day you have, value family and friends over possessions. We all know we should be doing this, but sometimes it takes something as serious as cancer to
Apr 29, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: memoir, first-reads
I am very impressed by this book. While Higley's perspective on cancer is not incredibly unique, his perspective on life and the connections between events in our lives provides valuable lessons for readers. I believe that the subtitle of the book, the style of writing, and the layout of the book perfectly parallel the author's intentions, and I appreciate the way that Higley challenges readers without being overly conversational.

Some of the lessons are not unique, but some are articulated in a
Kitty Honeycutt
Apr 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing

I am in love with Jim Higley and his family. I honestly do not think there is anyone out there that will read this story and not fall in love with the man. I fell in love with his spirit, his warmth, and his overall determination to not only defeat cancer but to keep a positive attitude, learn from the experience and live every day to the fullest. This book is one of a kind, his experience is richly woven in such a way that it keeps you reading. Anyone that
Apr 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
"Not just a cancer memoir," I might have read those words in one of the blurbs before I requested this as a First Reads book, but they're actually true. And that's okay, because it was not what I was expecting; I got exactly what I expected, and I enjoyed it. It sounds strange to say one "enjoyed" a cancer/inspirational memoir, but the stories, or "Life Lessons" included in this are poignant, funny and wise, some of them all at the same time. Higley is to be commended for delving into this ...more
Apr 29, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I just found out that I won this book from Goodreads! Looking forward to it! Thanks!

I finished this book not long after I posted my first remarks, but haven't been on Goodreads in ages. The book was very moving...a great story about a Dad who finds out he has the cancer changes not only him but the people around him and his relationships with them. My own Pops was diagnosed with stomach cancer in 1998 and this book made me think of him and all of the changes he went through
May 02, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-own
This book was very easy to read. I liked the short chapters with each chapter being a lesson. I feel like this book would be very enjoyable to someone older than me and may appeal more to males. Being a teenage female i didnt relate to this book very well. The author is funny and gives lessons that i believe are great lessons for an older audience. I was bored for most of the book just because i didnt care about the topics. Even so, the writing style is good and i would reccomend it to someone ...more
Julie Harrison
May 01, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-read
Every parent should read this book. I read it in one sitting. Truly amazing. I absolutely loved how he chose a memory from his past and somehow compared it to something current. I also have a very large family history of cancer and reading his story made me think of my own family and it was so moving. I laughed and cried- sometimes in the same chapter! It really warms your heart to read this book. Like I said I am going to recommend it to all parents!
Feb 26, 2014 rated it it was amazing
As a middle-aged, stay-at-home father, I found the author's self examination poignant as well as deliberately tactful and conscientiously comforting. There are many things to recapture when you feel like life is getting away from you and you've lost a sense of your younger identity. Jim Higley's journey (albeit through his cancer recovery) illustrates why we should never give up on ourselves and the ones we care about most. Enjoy.
Jul 25, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fic
Do not judge the book by the title or cover or you might, as I did, crack this open thinking it would be something along the silly lines of "Sh_t My Father Says" a book that had me at hello and provided hearty belly laughs. This is a cancer story-memoir. It absorbed me for an afternoon and has been on my mind since. I just hate cancer, but if you have to read about it, this one has some nice messaging.
Jenny T.
Apr 29, 2011 rated it really liked it
This is a free book from the Goodreads First Reads giveaways.
This memoir reflects what happens when one man is confronted with a cancer diagnosis and what he learns during the summer of his recovery from surgery. Written in an engaging manner with some basic life truths (live for today, keep it simple, etc). The author is fortunate to have good family and friends in his support network. I really enjoyed the wholesome stories of his childhood.
Dave Moyer
Sep 17, 2011 rated it liked it
I guess private relationships are private, but when you do a memoir of personal experiences, it seems that some things have to be a part of it, and leaving out all reference to his divorce is a bit questionable. At any rate, this account of life's simple lessons in the midst of a cancer battle does help the reader keep some focus on what's important and how to simplify in a complicated society.
Apr 28, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I'm clearing about 150 read books off my Kindle, so I'm not writing reviews for most of them. I'm just marking them as "read," but this is such a great book, I wanted to drop a short note. Like any good memoir, Bobblehead Dad will make you laugh, make you cry (really - get a tissue) and remind you of what's really important in life.
May 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book & read it in one day, as it was hard to put down. It is inspirational and will encourage anyone, regardless of what challenges we face, to live in the present and look for life's lessons along the way. Highly recommend!
Apr 28, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: self-help
I received this book as a giveaway on Goodreads. I didn't really connect with this author. The lessons he learned and how he relates them to his current situations were a bit of a stretch. I found it really hard to keep reading.
Shannon Baas
Apr 18, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This was a great book. i loved how the author went back and forth from his childhood and earlier adult life and the present after he had been diagnosed with cancer, the surgery and recovery. i would definitely recommend it, especially for someone who is going through treatment for cancer.
Jun 10, 2011 rated it it was amazing
A single father must face a battle with prostate cancer, which changes his entire perspective on life, reminding him of what matters most in this world. An inspirational story you won't soon forget! Read my full review here:
David Richardson
May 23, 2011 rated it really liked it
Shelves: first-reads
The message I got from this book is to slow down and pay attention to what is going on in your life. Time passes too quickly to take anything for granted. Enjoy today! I received this book for free from the Goodreads first read giveaway.
Sandi Orlando
Jan 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Bobblehead I see myself as Bobblehead mom! this was a great, inspiring read. This book, at minimum, has reminded me how important it is to live day-to-day and to quit focusing on the future. Every time I catch myself bobbing my head, I chuckle, open my ears and focus on the hear and now.
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JIM HIGLEY is the Bobblehead Dadwriter, speaker, life observer, and cancer warrior. He is the inaugural winner of the Worlds Greatest Dad Challenge, a nationwide contest sponsored by Procter & Gamble Productions Man of the House magazine.

Higleys weekly fatherhood column, Bobblehead Dad, is published in the Chicago Tribunes TribLocal. He is also a featured contributor for other national online

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