Robert's Reviews > The Glass Castle

The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls
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's review
Oct 20, 2007

really liked it
bookshelves: non-fiction, popular, audio
Read in June, 2009

This is the almost unbelievable story of Jeanette Walls' childhood, growing up with a lazy, alcoholic father and a flighty, selfish mother. Walls could have very easily given in to themes of self pity and blaming her parents. She did neither. She's apparently come to terms with how she was raised.

Throughout the book, I moved back and forth between wanting to slap her parents around and pitying them. It would be easy to write them off as terrible parents, but I can't ignore a few good things they did do. They never abused their children, at least physically. They loved them in their own way and taught them a version of self-worth.

I'll never think of homeless people the same. Everyone has their own story. It's not my place or judge or place blame. What would truly help people in such circumstances is very different depending on the individual. I'm not sure there's much that can be done in most cases. But I guess that depends on your definition of "help".

If you're up for delving into how the dregs of society live, then go for it, but this is not for the faint of heart.

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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Rebecca Rob I am curious to see what you think about this, and how much you see of Grandpa in the Dad.

message 2: by Jimlaudie (new)

Jimlaudie more recommendation for you too. Have you read the Street Lawyer by Grisham? Very interesting read that sheds a lot of light on the plight of the homeless as well. More from a legal angle as Grisham does so well. But I had a similar experience as you're describing here while reading that book. And so does the main character who is forever changed through his switch to largely pro bono legal work for the homeless in and around Washington DC.

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