Zeek's Reviews > The Glass Castle

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls
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Mar 23, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: classics-modern, literary, non-fiction
Read in July, 2008

A memoir that reads like a novel, this story deserves it's time on the best seller lists. I read this one on vacation and was totally absorbed the entire time reading it.

The story begins with an adult Jeannette spying her mother rummaging through the trash on the streets of NYC. Ashamed of her parents' homelessness and more ashamed of her reaction to them- the rest of The Glass Castle sensitively details her life with engaging tales of all she endured while growing up with all too fallible parents.

Born to an alcoholic father and flighty, artistic mother, Jeannette never seemed able to lay down roots- mostly because her eccentric parents couldn't hold down jobs. From living in the desert to a series of places no more than hovels, the Walls often found themselves doing the "skeedadle", as her father put it, to beat the bill collectors. They also had little time to receive a "proper" education, much to Jeannette's dismay.

Although her parents were definitely flawed, each had a brilliance all their own which they imparted to their children. Partly because of this, but more likely because of their own determination, Jeannette and her siblings managed to become productive, and for three of them, successful members of society.

The Glass Castle, a reference to her father's pipe dream of one day building a glass castle for his family to live in, is an insightful tale of a young girl who navigates the land mines her parents seemingly blithely place before her to grow up to be a surprisingly unencumbered woman who takes charge of her life in ways her parents never could.

A page turner for sure and an easy read that will stay with you long after you read it!
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