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Father Figure

4.27  ·  Rating details ·  207 ratings  ·  105 reviews
Between the fast-paced New York City, a rural Mississippi town and a charming Pennsylvania college campus filled with secrets, two young girls learn the consequences of growing up too quickly.

Amalia Graeme, abused by her mother for most of her life, longs to escape her desolate hometown and fall in love. Contemplating her loss of innocence and conflicting feelings betwee
Kindle Edition, Kindle, 415 pages
Published April 2nd 2018 by Next Chapter
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Average rating 4.27  · 
Rating details
 ·  207 ratings  ·  105 reviews

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Mar 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 1-fiction
Since this is my own book, I'm not going to write a review. I'm using this space to let you know when there are discounts or marketing promotions, as well as share some thoughts on how the book came to be.

Father Figure is my second novel. I posted five plot ideas in a poll on my blog to let readers, viewers, fans, and followers choose what book I wrote next. Once the winner was chosen, it took nine months to write, edit, share, and publish it in the spring of 2018. I'm most proud of how the stor
May 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
4.5 stars

I read this book in less than 24 hours- that only happens when a book sucks me in and doesn't let go! Father Figure is beautifully told in alternating timelines telling the stories of two young woman living in two different worlds. One who grew up in rural Mississippi in 1984 and the other young woman who lives in New York City in 2004. With most alternating timelines, the reader knows that eventually the timelines are going to merge - but how and why - that is the journey that this boo
Elyse  Walters
I love James first book -- "Watching Glass Shatter". Its fantastic!!! Highly recommend it!!!!

I didn't love "Father Figures". The writing annoyed me. I'm soooo sorry. I 'love' James as a person!!

Many themes: adolescence changes, challenges and choices, aggressive behaviors, abuse, physical, behavioral, and sexual changes, educational challenges, social and relationship issues, family secrets and dysfunctions, dealings with knowing when and how to get help, and a fixation to discover who 'fathe
Dash fan
Jun 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
4☆ A Gripping Tale

Father Figure is a poignant and gripping read that draws you in.
With the story told between alternative narratives each story is beautifully written, two very different young women, with years between them their paths eventually entwine.

We meet Amelia (The past 1984), my heart broke for her.
Her arrogant abusive mother beats and verbally abuses Amelia at every given opportunity. Branding her a whore!

Her Father a former preacher now runs his own shop, tries his hardest to soften
Jun 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
4 Complicated Stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟

A character driven domestic thriller with a splash of mystery... I really enjoy books told in this style from alternating points of view and time periods.... and even better it was done seamlessly in this book...

Two girls, 20 years apart, one living in Mississippi and the other in New York... I found both these girls lives equally compelling... and I enjoyed trying to figure out what tide these two stories together...

Amelia lives in Mississippi with her overly protective
Sophie "Beware Of The Reader"
The author has kindly given a copy of his book but it had no influence whatsoever on my willing and always honest review.

5 “brilliant scheming” stars

For those who follow me you must realize Father Figure is not my usual read. My favorite genre for some years now has been romance in all its variation be it YA or Adult, contemporary, fantasy, PNR….

Father Figure is many things but clearly not a romance. Yet I found it brilliant.
Father Figure is a mix between family drama/saga, suspense and diabolic
☆Dani☆ ☆Touch My Spine Book Reviews☆
Wow, what a read!!! I knew Jay was a hell of a writer but this one really had me up all night and knew how to hit me with all the right feels to continue reading even though I cried like a baby during some scenes. I have to be honest that there is two things that triggered slightly but they were brief things but felt I needed to bring up there is a quick scene where an animal is hurt and their is some abuse that happened to one of the main characters but even though I had a little bit of anxiety ...more
Nilanjana Haldar
Alright! Standing ovation for author, James J. Cudney!......

This book has earned my respect on so many fronts!

In not much variation in commentaries from many others who have reviewed this book before, I have to declare that the author, James’s choice of writing a novel that circled around the plights of women (a gender different from the writer’s) in different challenging life circumstances in society, mesmerised me with a whole new level of respect for the writer, as well as his creation.

The no
Apr 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Author James J Cudney IV has done it again with his second book Father Figure. His debut Watching Glass Shatter was a great family saga, and I wondered if he could re-create the magic with his words. But this time, he has surpassed his own debut.

The story follows the lives of two women Amalia in Mississippi in 1984 and Brianna in New York in 2004. Amalia is abused by her mother on a daily basis, yet she finds her happiness in her father's love and her escape in Pennsylvania College campus. Life
Candace Robinson
Jun 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I've been seeing both of Cudney's books floating around on Goodreads in my feed for a while now, and I have been wanting to read both of them. I decided to start with his latest one, Father Figure, and I wasn't sure what was going to go down in it. But boy, this book was a twisty, emotional, and awesome adventure!

Let me start by saying I loved the alternating perspectives between 1984 and 2004. First, I love the 80's and second I was 19 in 2004 and loved that year! This story is  very character
Brian Porter
Apr 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
James J Cudney has written a highly emotive book, involving the lives and loves of two women, one of whom Amalia is going through her adolescence in small town America in 1984, suffering daily abuse at the hands of her truly terrible mother, the other, Brianna, is going through similar experiences in New York in 2004, with an added complication. Brianna has never known her father and her mother, Molly has never opened up to her about who or what her father was. Brianna's quest to discover the tr ...more
Martie Nees Record
Apr 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Publisher: Creativia Publishing House
Pub. Date: April 2, 2018

Picture a story that cuts between two teenage girls living in very different places and times, without explaining their relationship to the reader. This is just the puzzle that the author, James J. Cudney, goes for and solves. One heroine lives in the Deep South, in a shoddy town in Mississippi. She grows up with an abusive mother, that I promise you will hate. The other girl lives in hip NYC, the Big Apple
Jill McGill
Aug 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Review to Come!
Aug 23, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: ya-contemporary
A story about two teenage girls. For Amalia, it's the mid-1980s, and she's desperate to leave her small town in Mississippi. For Brianna, it's 2004 and she's ready to leave New York City to to go off to college on her own.

Told with alternating points of view and alternating timelines. As with most books involving alternating timelines, part of the draw is seeing how the stories are connected. Both characters are similar in that they are teenagers wanting to be on their own and away from home. T
Nov 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
James J. Cudney has nailed emotional turmoil with FATHER FIGURE as he details the lives of two girls born twenty years apart, each forced to face the ugly side of life head on far too soon.

In a stroke of brilliance, adding to the blade-sharp tension, Mr. Cudney alternates timelines and points of view between Amalia Graeme’s life and the contemporary life of Brianna Porter. At first blush, the glue that binds them is their discontent with their lives, their search to belong somewhere and their ne
Oct 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I really like the stories that show us what will happen close to end of the story and I like to guess when it will happen, what was actually happened at that time and whom it was about. I tried to guess for this story too but I wasn't right about it, to be honest, I can't guess right for this kind of stories but I will get close enough to the right answer :))

About the story, we have two main characters, Rebecca and Amalia. If you pay attention to the chapters' names (I didn't at the beginning:))
Paul E. Morph
'Father Figure' by James J. Cudney is a dark tale with many twists and turns that will keep the reader guessing throughout.

I've only given it three stars (which is still 'I liked it' on my scale; too many people see a three star rating as a bad review) because I felt the writing was occasionally a bit stilted and forced, particularly the dialogue. Maybe it's because I live nowhere near the author but I don't know anybody who speaks so deliberately, if you know what I mean.

This issue aside, this
Julia Walker
Jun 04, 2018 rated it liked it
This is a coming of age story about Brianna who at the beginning of the story is in high school trying to decide where to go to college. Her best friend is in love with her, she has no idea who her father is and her mother will not tell her a single thing about her past much less the identity of her father. Brianna has a very hard time making decisions because for her not knowing who her father is leaves her incomplete. There are lots of twists and turns, it is a quick read and the story flows w ...more
Benedict Stuart
Aug 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Family, parents and other issues!

An emotional and dramatic life journey of two quite different girls with family issues. A heartfelt story of suspense, adventure and hard lessons. Good style, well developed and realistic characters.
May 28, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2018-reads
Thank you, James Cudney, for sharing your novel with us! I enjoyed your work this weekend, and am grateful for your generosity. Before I started reading, I did not read the summary or any reviews. I was surprised to find this an interesting blend of mystery, romance, and coming of age story...

Father Figure is a true page turner, and the deft pacing kept me turning pages until I'd arrived at the end of this long novel. It is set up cleverly, with the narrative bouncing back and forth both in time
Jul 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2018-5-star
Amalia and Brianna

Amalia Graeme is an abused teenager who can't wait to leave her home town of Brant, Mississippi, in 1984. Her mother, Janet, both verbally and physically abuses her. Her father, Peter, tries to let Amalia do things behind her mother's back. Amalia is proud to be a daddy's girl. Her father is her hero. Still, Amalia feels she must escape Brant before she is trapped there forever.

Bianna Porter is searching for her identity. In 2004, she lives in New York City with her mother, Mol
Robbie Cheadle
Jul 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Father Figure is an intriguing story of two women's journeys, at two different points in time, towards self acceptance and redemption.

Amalia grew up in the small town of Brant, Mississippi, the abused daughter of a jealous and spiteful mother, who suffers from diabetes, and a weak and insipid father, who turns a blind eye to his wife's physical and verbal abuse of his daughter. Despite her father's faults, Amalia is devoted to her father. Her love for her father does not prevent her from seekin
Sandra Jackson
Apr 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In 1984, naïve 17-year-old, Amalia Graeme, can’t wait for college to start to get away from her hometown Brant, Mississippi and her abusive mother. The only person she’ll miss is her father. It’s just too bad that over the years he did little to protect Amalia from her mother’s physical and emotional abuse.

20 years later, in 2004, another girl, Brianna Porter, is exploring a college campus with her best friend, Shanelle. Always feeling smothered by her over-protective mother, the only parent Br
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Combine the following ingredients - Two Girls, A College Campus, A Difficult Mother, An Unknown Father, Desires, Insecurities.

Shake it up and the result is a Literary Cocktail with strong flavors of Anticipation, Shock, Pleasure, Disappointment, Love and More. A must read to savor it all !

Author James J. Cudney has another winner. A compelling story that will engage all your emotions !
Brigid Gallagher
Jun 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery
Father Figure opens with a crime scene that leaves you guessing till the final chapter.
The reader follows the journey of Amalia who is about to leave her hometown in rural Mississippi, for college in 1984, but is subjected to cruel abuse from her mother Janet. Her father, whom she dearly loves, turns a blind eye. Although Amalia has a boyfriend, she eventually falls in love with an older man.
It is 2004, and Brianna aged 19, lives in New York with her mother Molly, and is unsure about her sexuali
Jul 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A coming of age story!

Set in a dual timeframe, the author creates a story of innocence lost, parental abuse, uncovered secrets, and the journey two young women take on the road to self-discovery.

Cudney uses the juxtaposition of completely different personalities- Amelia is shy and innocent while Brianna is confident and independent- to highlight underlying similarities. Both long for acceptance and love in a world that often seems unforgiving and harsh.

The plotline is nothing short of brilliant,
N.N. Light
Aug 08, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Father Figure is one of those novels which stays with you long after you finish reading. With a host of intriguing characters dealing with a multitude of issues, I couldn't put it down. The drama is heavy but the twists kept me invested. The ending was a surprise. Highly recommend!

My Rating: 5 stars

Reviewed by: Mrs. N
D.G. Kaye
Apr 25, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book takes us into the life of Amalia Graeme in the mid 80s, a sweet teenage girl living in small-town Mississippi. desperate to leave home and go to college to experience making friends, finding love, and most of all, getting away from her most deplorable excuse for a mother.

Amalia is pretty green when it comes to learning anything about love and life because she is taught nothing by her mother. We are taken through Amalia’s sad life at home, save for her father who dearly loves her, but s
Nico J. Genes
Poignant and gripping novel.

This was a truly engaging read. Structured in alternative chapters, it presented the story of two young women living twenty years apart, one desperately trying to run away and forget her past, the other one eager to find answers about her past and her true sexuality.

Twenty years ago, Amalia suffered from the actions and words of an abusive mother. Her father tried to soften the pain, showing more understanding, but unfortunately not brave enough to stand up to his wi
Yesha- Books Teacup and Reviews
You can read all my review on Blog - Books Teacup and Reviews

Father Figure was dramatic, suspenseful contemporary fiction telling the story of Amalia and Brianna with lots of twist and turns. It was about coming of age, complex relationships and secrets, and uncovering the mystery of past.


Amalia’s life was difficult at Graeme family home with her abusive mother who unleashed hell whenever she saw Amalia around and tongue tied father who loved and adored his daughter but never dared to
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James is my given name; most call me Jay. I grew up on Long Island and currently live in New York City, but I've traveled all across the US and various parts of the world. After college, I accepted roles working in technology, program management, and business operations in the retail, sports, entertainment, and media industries. Although I enjoy my career, I began to focus on other passions in 201 ...more

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