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Discussion Archives > November 2014: The Glass Castle

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message 1: by Rachel Jorquera , Moderator (new)

Rachel Jorquera  (racheljorquera) | 2955 comments Mod
The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls


message 2: by Kristie (new)

Kristie I just finished this. (I got an early start!) I thought it was a great memoir. I'm so glad I finally got around to reading it and I can't wait to discuss it with everyone.

For starters, I have to say that it was interesting to see her parents' point of view on some things. I work in the mental health field and that perspective was fascinating to me. I won't say anything about specifics until people have had a chance to read it.


message 3: by Rachel Jorquera , Moderator (new)

Rachel Jorquera  (racheljorquera) | 2955 comments Mod
SO beautifully written. It gives me the chills when I think about this book. I have read it a few times, and I am going to re-read it for the sake of reliving Walls life.


message 4: by Shinjini (new)

Shinjini (shinjini14) I am about 20% in and I love the narration. I don't usually read Non-fiction so I was a little nervous about this one. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the book reads just like a Fiction book. The narration is lucid and very easy to follow.

Also, I have to say the parents' point of view on some topics is really interesting. I would agree to some points that I have come across but I still think the execution of those plans wasn't done well enough.

All in all, it's a nice experience reading this one.


message 5: by Ashley (last edited Nov 04, 2014 11:32AM) (new)

Ashley (morethanfairytales) | 30 comments I read this last month and absolutely loved it. Not only is it beautifully written, but Jeannette fully captures the complexity of loving and caring for her family while dealing with some shocking and disturbing events. It could very easily have been a book filled with anger and resentment, but instead had several redemptive and hopeful moments.


message 6: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1249 comments I had the opportunity to meet Walls when she was on the book tour for this book (back in 2005). What an inspirational story. I am in awe at her capacity for forgiveness.


message 7: by Kristie (new)

Kristie Shinjini wrote: "I don't usually read Non-fiction so I was a little nervous about this one. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the book reads just like a Fiction book. The narration is lucid and very easy to follow."

I thought the same thing. It didn't feel as dry as a lot of nonfiction does to me. I was really glad that I gave it a shot.


Ashley wrote: "It could very easily have been a book filled with anger and resentment, but instead had several redemptive and hopeful moments."

I completely agree with this. I think that's part of what made this book so great. She is just so forgiving and understanding. You get a real sense for the love she has for her family.


Book Concierge wrote: "I had the opportunity to meet Walls when she was on the book tour for this book (back in 2005). What an inspirational story. I am in awe at her capacity for forgiveness."

That must have been so interesting. She seems like quite an amazing woman.


message 8: by Demetra (new)

Demetra (dedra_de) | 80 comments I just finished reading The Glass Castle. I almost quit after the first few chapters. I feel like it should have had the disclaimer: This book is based on a true story. I don't doubt that the author has some memories of getting burned and ending up in the hospital, but I don't believe that she is able to remember all the minute details of the hospital stay from when she was 3 years old like it is written. I struggle to remember dialogue from a few years ago, much less from my childhood!

I am glad I finished the book. I enjoyed her story. Honestly, I'm not as annoyed with her parents as I thought I would be when I read reviews. I have a pretty firm belief that people generally do the best they can to survive in the world. Sometimes it is ugly. I had a lot more patience for their dad than their mom. I think he had a lot of hurt in his life and I think it was apparent that he loved his kids, but his addictions really got in the way. I struggled more with mom. The chocolate bar story, her blowing all their money on art supplies, the value of the land in Texas, and her expectations of the kids to fend for themselves bothered me.


message 9: by Kristie (new)

Kristie The mom taking the diamond ring they found and keeping it instead of using it to buy food killed me.


message 10: by Shay (new)

Shay (shaylyn318) | 61 comments I guess I am the odd one out. I have taken a small break form reading this. I find some of the things she remembers so clearly a little embellished. I just can't believe some of the things the parents did. I know it happens but to be in the moment while reading is just WOW. I would have titled this book "The How to Guide of Bad Parenting."


message 11: by Jody (new)

Jody (beaume) | 37 comments I just finished this book, I thought it was well written. The struggles the children went through did make them stronger and through it all they still loved their parents despite what they put them through and tried to help them through all their lives!


message 12: by Colleen (new)

Colleen  | 143 comments I felt really sorry for the younger sister, she seems more messed up from it all, and we didn't get as much explanation for that as I hoped. I do have Half Broke Horses so will probably get to it, but I think that one is embellished more I heard.


message 13: by Kristie (new)

Kristie I think it would have to be, Colleen. It's my understanding that it's her grandmother's story and this book gives the impression that her family probably didn't talk about that too much and wouldn't be really helpful in giving her any details.


message 14: by Book Concierge (new)

Book Concierge (tessabookconcierge) | 1249 comments Half Broke Horses is a novel based on her grandmother's life. It is absolutely fiction, and is classified as such in book stores and libraries.


message 15: by Shay (new)

Shay (shaylyn318) | 61 comments "You know, it's really not that hard to put food on the table if that's what you decide to do.

I love this quote. So true in this case. These parents defiantly could have provided for their kids but chose not too.


message 16: by Alissa (new)

Alissa Patrick (apatrick12211) I'm about 30 percent through and I love it. As a new mom myself I can identify with the way the parents are trying the best they can (in terms of looking at things as "adventures" rather than dire circumstances). However, I was sickened with any mention of the children being hungry and the mom being so nonchalant about it. And eating margarine...... Gross. Poor kids


message 17: by Jasmine (new)

Jasmine | 5 comments This book both inspired and angered me. It was definitely a fantastic portrayal of what it's like to live with parent(s) that have mental issues. Having experienced this first-hand, it's harder for me to identify with Rosemary. To be honest, at times I wanted to assault her. Either way, it is a very good look into a non-typical childhood of the "underserved."


message 18: by Shinjini (new)

Shinjini (shinjini14) I don't know what to think about this book. On the one hand, I have been infuriated with some very irresponsible examples of parenting while on the other, there have been some times when the parents had their children's backs.

All in all, I loved the way all the kids in the book had the power to forgive their parents and that's what made this book so, so lovely. The fact that they could do that, speaks a lot about the kind of people they are. I'm glad I read this book, considering I didn't know anything about it and I need to thank this group for giving me this gem. The power of GR keeps astonishing me. :)


message 19: by Amy (new)

Amy (amyhendrix22) | 48 comments Wow this book really kept me intrigued. I have to say most parts infuriated me; in regards to how the parents took care of their children. This book made me really thankful for my parents and the way I was raised.


message 20: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Falco | 3 comments I love this book and I couldn't imagine what it was like growing up the way she did.
I feel so sheltered from that type of life and my heart aches for her and her siblings.
I hope she is mentally stable and was able to put her past behind her and make her a stronger better mother.
Either way the book was fantastic, well written and a page turner ! It seems from the responses everyone enjoyed it too.


message 21: by [deleted user] (new)

I read this book awhile ago, and passed it on to my mother to read as well. I enjoyed seeing a different view on what it takes to be happy, and learning about her parents and their parenting philosophy. I feel sorry for the way the author and her siblings were raised, but in reading her memoir, there were some extremely happy times as well.


message 22: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Falco | 3 comments How was the memoir Maggie?


message 23: by Michelle (new)

Michelle Falco | 3 comments How was the memoir Maggie?


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