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The Glass Castle: A Memoir

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The Glass Castle: A Memoir Cover

ISBN13: 9780743247542
ISBN10: 074324754x
Condition: Standard
All Product Details

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an "excitement addict." Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could make a painting that might last forever.

Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town — and the family — Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had the guts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes her parents with such deep affection and generosity. Hers is a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that despite its profound flaws gave her the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms.

For two decades, Jeannette Walls hid her roots. Now she tells her own story.

Review:

"Walls has joined the company of writers such as Mary Karr and Frank McCourt who have been able to transform their sad memories into fine art." People

Review:

"Walls's journalistic bare-bones style makes for a chilling, wrenching, incredible testimony of childhood neglect. A pull-yourself-up-by-the-bootstraps, thoroughly American story." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Jeannette Walls has carved a story with precision and grace out of one of the most chaotic, heartbreaking childhoods ever to be set down on the page. This deeply affecting memoir is a triumph in every possible way, and it does what all good books should: it affirms our faith in the human spirit." Dani Shapiro, author of Family History

Review:

"The Glass Castle is the saga of the restless, indomitable Walls family, led by a grand eccentric and his tempestuous artist wife. Jeannette Walls has survived poverty, fires, and near starvation to triumph. She has written this amazing tale with honesty and love." Patricia Bosworth, author of Anything Your Little Heart Desires and Diane Arbus: A Biography

Review:

"Just read the first pages of The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, and I defy you not to go on. It's funny and sad and quirky and loving. I was incredibly touched by it." Dominick Dunne, author of The Way We Lived Then: Recollections of a Well-Known Name Dropper

Review:

"Memoirs are our modern fairy tales....The autobiographer is faced with the daunting challenge of attempting to understand, forgive, and even love the witch....Readers will marvel at the intelligence and resilience of the Walls kids." Francine Prose, The New York Times Book Review

Review:

"The Glass Castle is nothing short of spectacular." Entertainment Weekly

Synopsis:

“Nothing short of spectacular” (Entertainment Weekly), The Glass Castle is the bestselling, critically acclaimed, highly publicized, and celebrated memoir by Jeannette Walls. Millions of readers have been transformed by Jeannette Walls’s award-winning memoir of resilience amid a deeply dysfunctional childhood. When sober, Jeannette’s brilliant and charismatic father captured his children’s imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he was dishonest and destructive. Her mother was a free spirit who abhorred the idea of domesticity and didn’t want the responsibility of raising a family.

The Walls children learned to take care of themselves. They fed, clothed, and protected one another, and eventually found their way to New York. Their parents followed them, choosing to be homeless even as their children prospered. The Glass Castle is truly astonishing and poised to stand the test of time.

About the Author

For two decades, Jeannette Walls hid her roots. Now she tells her own story. A regular contributor to MSNBC.com, she lives in New York and Long Island and is married to the writer John Taylor.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 51 comments:

Jonathan Zilberman, May 1, 2013 (view all comments by Jonathan Zilberman)
Review on Glass Castle
Few people can survive in the desert with little or no food or money, let alone children. But this is exactly what the children of The Glass Castle have to do. The Glass Castle is a story in the life of Jeannette Walls, a little girl of Rex and Rosemary Walls. She, along with her brother, Brian, and her sister, Lori, have to take care of themselves, as they endure a poor existence. Their father is a drunk and their mother has no time for them, so they essentially raise themselves. The children manage to improve their lives and make the best of their experiences. They roam from town to town because their father is constantly losing jobs. A side effect of this is that the Walls children never truly receive a thorough education. They manage to learn useful things through their father, who is very intelligent, despite the fact that he is often forgetful and doesn’t carry through on his promises. Throughout this story there are many times in which the incidents that befall Jeannette are shocking. It seems that this book must be fiction because the events seem so outrageous to normal people. This book was extremely detailed and it is amazing how much of her childhood the author remembered. It also showed a side of life that many experience, but that few or none document. It expressed thoughts clearly and transitioned ideas easily. I personally found that this book has a unique personality that mesmerizes and intrigues. It tells a story that is like no other. The Glass Castle has left me with the insight that money is not everything in life. As well, it has the theme of hope, because no matter how bad the Walls' life was if they retained hope it always improved. This book left me with a respect for the life that I live.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
eleekendrick, March 20, 2013 (view all comments by eleekendrick)
One of the best books I have read in a long time, and possibly the best memoir I have ever read. It is so beautiful, haunting, and disturbing all at the same time. I love that the mood of the book changes as she gets older (the book starts when she is 3) with the beginning feeling more adventurous and free-spirited and about 1/2 way through it becomes more dark as she gets older and feels the stress of poverty and her own feelings of responsibility in taking care of her family and finding a way to make a different life for herself. I found myself angry at her parents for the life they put their kids through, especially when they had opportunities to make changes and receive support, but there were also times that I respected their choices and the creative ways they loved and took care of their children. This is a must read, especially for anyone working in social services or who grew up in poverty or a dysfunctional family of some kind (and really, who didn't?).
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
325silvia, January 3, 2013 (view all comments by 325silvia)
Very funny, real, and moving memoir...by far one of the best memoirs I've read!
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)
View all 51 comments

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743247542
Author:
Walls, Jeannette
Publisher:
Scribner Book Company
Subject:
Literary
Subject:
Women
Subject:
Adult Children of Alcoholics
Subject:
Homeless persons
Subject:
Entertainment & Performing Arts - Television Personalities
Subject:
Poor
Subject:
Childhood Memoir
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
Editors, Journalists, Publishers
Subject:
Dysfunctional Families
Subject:
Problem families -- United States.
Subject:
Children of alcoholics -- United States.
Subject:
Biography - General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
B102
Publication Date:
January 2006
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
304
Dimensions:
8 x 5.25 in 9.38 oz

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Health and Self-Help » Self-Help » Memoirs
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History and Social Science » Sociology » Poverty

The Glass Castle: A Memoir Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$7.50 In Stock
Product details 304 pages Scribner Book Company - English 9780743247542 Reviews:
"Review" by , "Walls has joined the company of writers such as Mary Karr and Frank McCourt who have been able to transform their sad memories into fine art."
"Review" by , "Walls's journalistic bare-bones style makes for a chilling, wrenching, incredible testimony of childhood neglect. A pull-yourself-up-by-the-bootstraps, thoroughly American story."
"Review" by , "Jeannette Walls has carved a story with precision and grace out of one of the most chaotic, heartbreaking childhoods ever to be set down on the page. This deeply affecting memoir is a triumph in every possible way, and it does what all good books should: it affirms our faith in the human spirit."
"Review" by , "The Glass Castle is the saga of the restless, indomitable Walls family, led by a grand eccentric and his tempestuous artist wife. Jeannette Walls has survived poverty, fires, and near starvation to triumph. She has written this amazing tale with honesty and love."
"Review" by , "Just read the first pages of The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, and I defy you not to go on. It's funny and sad and quirky and loving. I was incredibly touched by it."
"Review" by , "Memoirs are our modern fairy tales....The autobiographer is faced with the daunting challenge of attempting to understand, forgive, and even love the witch....Readers will marvel at the intelligence and resilience of the Walls kids."
"Review" by , "The Glass Castle is nothing short of spectacular."
"Synopsis" by , “Nothing short of spectacular” (Entertainment Weekly), The Glass Castle is the bestselling, critically acclaimed, highly publicized, and celebrated memoir by Jeannette Walls. Millions of readers have been transformed by Jeannette Walls’s award-winning memoir of resilience amid a deeply dysfunctional childhood. When sober, Jeannette’s brilliant and charismatic father captured his children’s imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he was dishonest and destructive. Her mother was a free spirit who abhorred the idea of domesticity and didn’t want the responsibility of raising a family.

The Walls children learned to take care of themselves. They fed, clothed, and protected one another, and eventually found their way to New York. Their parents followed them, choosing to be homeless even as their children prospered. The Glass Castle is truly astonishing and poised to stand the test of time.

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