Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Old Man” as Want to Read:
Old Man
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Old Man

3.42  ·  Rating details ·  97 ratings  ·  17 reviews
Just as summer vacation is about to arrive, Nate Huffman's plans are unexpectedly shelved for the most unlikely of reasons: the reappearance of his estranged father. Not only is the old man back, he's got this goofy idea about a road trip the two of them will take.

Nate finds himself in a pickup with a man he can't stand. His father wants to reconnect, and he w
Paperback, 224 pages
Published January 26th 2013 by Dundurn (first published January 1st 2013)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Old Man, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Old Man

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.42  · 
Rating details
 ·  97 ratings  ·  17 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Susan Toy
Jul 17, 2013 rated it really liked it
The first thought that came to mind when I heard the title of David A. Poulsen's new book, "Old Man," was the Neil Young song of the same name. So it was no surprise when I saw that Poulsen had cited the first couple of lines from Young's song in his epigraphs. Very fitting for this terrific book about a teenager, Nate, coming to terms with a father he's never known, who suddenly comes back into his life, ruining well-laid plans for the summer by taking him on a magical mystery tour that proves ...more
Dec 16, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: alberta
Old Man, tells the story of 15 year old Nathan Huffman (Nate), who out of the blue hears from his (Old man) father, Larry. Larry is the kind of father who would phone and send cards on birthdays and holidays. Larry left Nathan and his mother when Nathan was just 5 for a 19 year lady. It was obvious that Larry liked younger women, because Nathan’s mom was 27 and Larry was 47 when Nathan was born.

Out of the blue one day Larry ends up calling to see if Nate can spend 3 weeks of his Summer va
Oct 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Old Man by David Poulsen, a novel characterized by its heavy and difficult-to-comprehend moral, yet typical modern setting and rather common, usual plot. This was my selected fiction novel from the White Pines list (for school), and I personally regard this is the best fiction prose from this list.
1. Nate; 16-year old male typical teenage narrator, protagonist and antagonist to himself; receives unexpected phone call from estranged father, Larry, who left family when Nate was only four.
2. Toge
David R
Jun 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
When reading David A Poulsen's latest teen/adult crossover novel, Old Man, the reader first sees the author's note that states, "This book is not for everyone." It is part of Poulsen's warning about the book's realism in dealing with a world 'out there' from a time 'back then'. Old Man is, in fact, a gritty drama about fifteen year-old Nate Huffman preparing for life, the past ten years without his father. We learn in the novel's first lines that Nate "...never call him Dad again."

Jan 17, 2016 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 15, 2013 rated it it was ok
I appreciate what this book attempted to do. I think it really did try to bring in certain serious topics, that it really did mean well. However for a couple of reasons it didn't quite work out, and they kind of put me off the novel.

I feel that it's always considered an improvement to a character when they move past their fixation for someone. I just cannot stand books that take this approach.

The serious topics that were brought out in this book, weren't treated 'right' in my opinio
Apr 20, 2014 rated it really liked it
Quite a realistic depiction of how scarred soldiers of wars are. I've always heard that soldiers often struggle with PTSD (stress disorder), etc. but I never knew how they would truly feel. Poulsen did a great job on describing just how emotionally and mentally unstable a victim of war becomes.

His son was a regular teenager that was into girls, had a home, got an education. Throughout the book, there were snippets of Nate doing regular-21st-century teenagers would do. (Maybe I'm just
❅ (t.c) (hiatus: school)
Nov 29, 2013 rated it did not like it
Teenager spends a summer with enstranged dad, finds out about his past and why he does the things he does. At the end, goes like "thanks dad, i understand now" WTF. this is so stupid. (view spoiler) ...more
Sylvia McNicoll
Oct 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A father attempts to forge a last minute bond with his son by taking him for a revisit of his war memories on a surprise trip to Viet Nam. Teenaged Nate is not quick to forgive an older dad who abandoned him (when he was five) and his mom for a younger dental hygienist. But the reader and main character grow to have a greater understanding of what he and other veterans experienced in an unpopular war. While there are scenes depicting war cruelty, because they're filtered through a memory, they a ...more
Diana Thompson
May 12, 2014 rated it liked it
I read this book because it is a 2014 white pine award nominee. I didn't care for the attitude of the teen-age protagonist, but suspect it may be dead-on for teenage age boys. I did like the ending, though I did not appreciate the lack of transparency between the two. Was the marriage break-down and the lack of interest in his son a product of PTSD. It is not clear. Overall, I did like the book.
Pamela McDowell
Oct 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-ya
David captures Nate's conflicted emotions and insecurities perfectly. Nate's easy to like. He's an average teenage boy plunked down in a foreign land with a stranger and the reader quickly begins to care about what happens to him. The descriptions of Vietnam - the sights, smells and cacophony of sound - create a vibrant sense of place. I would definitely recommend this novel for mature teens, 13 years and older.
Josianne Haag
Apr 24, 2014 rated it liked it
It was good but it left me with a weird feeling. The characters' reactions to things were anything but normal, making it hard to understand their motivations for things. I could never really get into the story. There were times when I had no idea how the main character stayed so calm and introspective. If I were in some of those situations, I would probably run away screaming.
The plot was okay and it was enjoyable enough, though I wouldn't necessarily recommend it.
Feb 05, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I thought this book was great, a lot of fuzzy feelings in the heart place. I loved how witty Nate was, his sarcasm was probably my favourite part of the book. Overall this is just a really great read.
Laura Sundal
Mar 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
It was alright but the main character as a pain in the ass.
Apr 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fiction
Amazing book! It was absolutely wonderful!!
Emily Hays
Dec 20, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2013, canadian
I may or may not have cried at the end so 3.5/5 stars.
my review on my blog ->
rated it did not like it
Nov 06, 2013
Elisabeth Gagnon
rated it liked it
Aug 18, 2014
rated it it was amazing
Jun 23, 2019
rated it really liked it
Jan 31, 2014
rated it it was ok
Jul 14, 2013
rated it really liked it
May 17, 2014
Cassie Brown
rated it it was amazing
Dec 28, 2013
rated it it was ok
Oct 15, 2013
rated it really liked it
Dec 03, 2013
rated it liked it
Aug 07, 2013
Shantal Macarthur
rated it really liked it
Feb 14, 2015
rated it really liked it
Sep 30, 2016
rated it liked it
Apr 01, 2013
« previous 1 3 4 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
David A. Poulsen has been a rodeo competitor and rodeo clown, rock singer, high school football coach, stage and film actor, documentary television writer and host, and college English instructor. Since retiring from rodeo competition - he admits to being a not-very-good bareback rider and later an accident-prone rodeo clown, David Poulsen has taken up residence in announcer's stands across North ...more
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »