Gilead (Gilead, #1) Gilead discussion


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message 1: by marilyn (last edited Aug 25, 2016 10:49AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

marilyn I'm hurt that this book is on the goodreads all-time "unpopular" list.

sometimes slow and quiet is beautiful. thoughtful and careful and deeply in love with the world for its simplicity and its great divinity.


message 2: by DJ (last edited Aug 25, 2016 10:49AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

DJ I thought this book was a solid read - it is slow, but it's earnest in what it is. Just a nice pastoral read - I think it'd be a good book for the spring.


message 3: by scotti (last edited Aug 25, 2016 10:53AM) (new)

scotti I was recovering from pneumonia when I read this. I loved the slow, deliberate pace and fabulous prose.


message 4: by Alicia (last edited Aug 25, 2016 10:54AM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Alicia I also enjoyed the read. It's obviously an excellent novel for fathers and sons to share.


message 5: by Jonathan (last edited Aug 25, 2016 11:08AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jonathan I myself was recovering from a car crash when I read this book, and I swear it did its part to nurse me back to health. Robinson's prose is downright poetic. I really want to read her earlier novel Housekeeping.


james i have to admit, this was not one of my favorite books. i noticed that many of you shared a similar interest in the "slow, deliberate pace".

i thought perhaps you might enjoy: THE SEA by John Banville.

Happy Holidays to all,
Anthony


Rachel Wagner I can see why some might not enjoy it. Hardly anything actually happens but in a sense everything happens- just all within the mind and heart of one man. At times it felt like a philosophical discourse on mankinds need for love, peace, forgiveness and growth. It's the kind of book that could never be a movie because there aren't enough events to cover, but its kind of refreshing to read a book that couldn't be a movie. A book that is great just as though provoking literature.


Cynthia This feels like a meditation on a life that, though perhaps small, has a definite sense of time and place. Drama and action are lacking here but gentle wisdom flows throughout.


Zulfiya It is a very nurturing book, and the prose is as transparent as a pearly haze, and it is also balmy, soothing, and healing.
As a secular person I do not share and do not relate to some of the topics, but the universal topics of parenthood and human happiness are enticing. The idea of true peace of mind and peace with oneself is soothing as a quiet lullaby


message 10: by E (last edited Dec 15, 2011 12:53PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

E Mcleod My aging brain cannot properly attribute the idea that there are two types of books: books about being, and books about doing. Very rarely does an author manage to strike a balance, nor is even interested in doing so. "Gilead" for me was a tremendously rich, and very intimate 'memoir' of a human being that was, as one commenter suggested, healing. That is the strength of "Gilead" - its quietness, the radiance of simple things that become expressible in that quietness, and its deeply spiritual and luminescent impact. It is not a plot-driven or "doing" story, and I understand why there are those who did not resonate with it. For those who did however, I would venture to say that its "connect" is almost unprecedented.


message 11: by Meg (last edited Sep 01, 2012 05:30PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Meg I loved Gilead so much that I rushed to read Housekeeping, and I cannot tell you how disappointed I was. It had way too many words. Instead of being soothing and meditative like Gilead, it was just exhausting. I think it might have made a good short story.

In 2009, Robinson published Home, which is the same story as Gilead, but told from the point of view of Boughton's daughter Glory. Seems like it would not have anything new to say, but I loved it every bit as much as I loved Gilead.

I found Rachel's comment above, about books that could not be made into movies, very thought-provoking. Robinson's writing evokes feelings more than pictures. I guess not everyone finds that entertaining.


Andrew Herren Meg wrote: "I loved Gilead so much that I rushed to read Housekeeping, and I cannot tell you how disappointed I was. It had way too many words. Instead of being soothing and meditative like Gilead, it was ju..."

Housekeeping was a very different kind of book (compared with Gilead)but I actually liked it better!


message 13: by Laura (new)

Laura Sims I would like to read this book. lsims.sepi@gmail.com epub please.


message 14: by Nicole Angel (new)

Nicole Angel E, love your post/review!!! it made me want to find out more about this author!


message 16: by Rosanna (new)

Rosanna McCoy Carrie,

I may have signed up in the wrong place, so I will try again. I'd love to offer SOUL SURVIVOR to the R2R program and will email you with the details.

Thanks,

Rosanna McCoy


LindaJ^ Marilynne Robinson knows how to use language. Gilead is my favorite of her 3 novels. I agree that it is probably not a book that will ever me a movie! However, Housekeeping was a movie -- made in 1987. The aunt was played by Christine Lahti and she was amazing in the role. Here's a link to the preview of the movie -- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJ80uK.... It is one of the few movies that I think does an excellent job of capturing the feel of the book. However, the book is a must read for its use of language.


message 18: by Scott (last edited Aug 09, 2013 08:24AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Scott Wyatt Linda wrote: "Marilynne Robinson knows how to use language."

I LOVE Robinson's use of language! I was sometimes amazed by a single sentence - to the point that I spent my entire reading underlining the ones that struck me. The telling was slow and methodical and thoughtful. I felt like it was a crockpot book. I savored it.


Stacie Rachel wrote: "I can see why some might not enjoy it. Hardly anything actually happens but in a sense everything happens- just all within the mind and heart of one man. At times it felt like a philosophical disc..."

What you said; that's beautiful, frankly.

I love this book.


message 20: by Wendy (new) - added it

Wendy Hudson I tried to read this but just couldn't get into it. The popularity of Lila made me want to try it. Will I not understand the storyline of Lila if I didn't read Gilead and Housekeeping?


Melana Wendy wrote: "I tried to read this but just couldn't get into it. The popularity of Lila made me want to try it. Will I not understand the storyline of Lila if I didn't read Gilead and Housekeeping?"

I'm sure that Lila is a "stand alone" novel and you should give it a try. It will be Lila's story, just as Gilead was John Ames story.


message 22: by Judy (last edited Nov 13, 2014 06:53AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Judy This book was recommended to me by a librarian friend, and if anyone knows books, it's a librarian.

It's been a while since I read it but I remember I enjoyed its quiet pace and meditative quality. It had me thinking about what's important in my own life, and if I were to write a letter like this to my daughter, what would I want to say to her.

And I wouldn't feel hurt about the book being on the all time "unpopular" list. We have all lived long enough to know that something is not good just because it's popular.


Libby Hard to believe its on an all-time un-popular list! It was slow moving like you said but so beautiful. Who wouldn't want to have a dad that loved you that much!.
marilyn wrote: "I'm hurt that this book is on the goodreads all-time "unpopular" list.

sometimes slow and quiet is beautiful. thoughtful and careful and deeply in love with the world for its simplicity and its..."



Jenny Home was my favorite...sigh.


Victor Davis I can believe it. I experienced a similar problem with The Greenlanders. We have become so adapted to highly structured narration that hundreds of pages of unbroken text are jarring. I think that Gilead might consist of the most beautiful prose I've ever read. But the wandering narrative, the unbroken letter format, and the intensely exclusionary first person make it difficult to digest. I had to put it down halfway through, and only finished it recently, skipping & skimming liberally because I felt it didn't really matter if I missed a passage or read a passage twice. The words all flowed into each other like tidewater, and I felt I could read it almost as one reads the Bible: by opening to a random page and relishing in the florid language out of context.


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Gilead (other topics)
Home (other topics)
The Greenlanders (other topics)