December 3

The Glass Castle

Posted by lori . 9 Comments


The Glass Castle is a memoir by Jeannette Walls.  It chronicles her life growing up with parents who were nonconformists in the best and worst sense.  Jeannette Walls’ early life is populated by extreme characters and situations.  What fascinates me is her ability to shine a frank, honest, loving and generous light on a life and family with profound flaws and challenges.  We all strive to understand other people, and perhaps by understanding them or at least accepting them, we gain a greater understanding and acceptance of ourselves.  Jeannette Walls triumphant and compassionate story encourages that endeavor.

I’m participating in a readalong challenge hosted by Nicole (Linus’s Blanket) and Natalie (Coffee and a Book Chick).  The book we’re reading is Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel, the 2009 Man Booker Prize winner.  Wolf Hall is a fictionalized biography chronicling the rise to power of Thomas Cromwell in the court of King Henry VIII, and is currently being adapted into a miniseries by HBO and BBC.  This week, we read Parts 1 & 2.

What I’m enjoying:

* I love British history and all things royal, so I like the subject matter.

* I enjoy a change of perspective and hearing from  “supporting role” characters.  This adds a depth and breadth to my understanding of a period of history and the people who lived during that time.

* Wolf Hall reads easily.  The story moves along through “conversations” as opposed to descriptions of events.

What I’m finding challenging:

* Ms. Mantel liberally uses the pronoun “he,” so I find myself losing track of who is talking or being referred to.

* I’m familiar with this period of history and the main characters.  If I weren’t, I think I would struggle because the backstory and broader view of events isn’t presented in much depth.

It’s far too early for me to make any judgment about the book.  In fact, I really don’t like talking about a book until I’ve read the entire thing because something that annoys me early on will often be the thing that makes the book impactful to me in the end.  For now, I’m enjoying the book and looking forward to where it’s leading.


This entry was posted on Saturday, December 3rd, 2011 at 3:00 am and is filed under Few and Well Chosen (Books). You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

9 Responses to " The Glass Castle"

  • houndstooth says:

    The Glass Castle sounds interesting, and actually, Wolf Hall does, too!

    I’m reading Angelology right now, and it’s been rather engrossing!

  • Lori, on a totally unrelated subject –

    i’m just wondering how you find time to do 30 days of creative craft, blog about all manner of things, read, watch movies and review them and still have a life. do you have more than 24 hours in a day where you live?

    your dogs must be very understanding.

    • lori says:

      I look much better on my blog than in real life! The Art Every Day Month challenge was just that, a challenge. I tried to pick easy projects so that I could complete the challenge, but it was rough. Blogging everyday is helped along by my “schedule,” so I can plan out ahead of time what I’m writing about. I also love blogging, so that helps too. The book and movie thing…I do love reading and watching movies, but all this year I’ve highlighted books and movies that are “historical” favorites of mine. I’ve only included a handful of books and movies that I’ve read or watched this year. The pups are understanding. They’ve all figured out that I can work on the computer and pet them at the same time. If you could see a picture of my kitchen looking like a disaster zone and my unmade bed, you’d be less impressed…but, I’m not posting that!

  • rottrover says:

    I’m re-reading The Glass Castle. Jeanette Walls embodies the concept of resillience. What an amazing woman:-)

  • Lorren says:

    Like you I am struggling a bit with all of the “he” business, but I also like that the story is told so much through dialogue. I haven’t read The Glass Castle yet but it is sitting on my shelf… I am looking forward to reading it soon!

  • Thank you so much for participating! I also love anything regarding British royal history, so I was happy to pick up this book. However, I also struggled in the first 40 pages or so and it was only after I realized how to read it (the “he” issue) that I started to really enjoy it and can’t seem to put it down. And with this being from more of a “sideline” character’s perspective, it’s even more intriguing.

  • Heather says:

    I loved the Glass Castle 🙂

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