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The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls (excerpt)

The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls (excerpt)

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Published by Simon and Schuster
Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an "excitement addict." Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could make a painting that might last forever.

Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town -- and the family -- Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had the guts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes her parents with such deep affection and generosity. Hers is a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that despite its profound flaws gave her the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms.
Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn nonconformity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary Walls had four children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, moving among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was a charismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embrace life fearlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn't stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an "excitement addict." Cooking a meal that would be consumed in fifteen minutes had no appeal when she could make a painting that might last forever.

Later, when the money ran out, or the romance of the wandering life faded, the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town -- and the family -- Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. He stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents' betrayals and, finally, found the resources and will to leave home.

What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had the guts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes her parents with such deep affection and generosity. Hers is a story of triumph against all odds, but also a tender, moving tale of unconditional love in a family that despite its profound flaws gave her the fiery determination to carve out a successful life on her own terms.

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Publish date: Jan 9, 2006
Added to Scribd: Mar 11, 2012
Copyright:Traditional Copyright: All rights reserved

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12/15/2014

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Praise for
The Glass Castle 
The autobiographer is faced with the daunting challenge of...attempt-ing to understand,forgive and even love the witch....Readers will mar-vel at the intelligence and resilience ofthe Walls kids.—Francine Prose,
The New York Times Book Review 
A pull-yourself-up-by-the-bootstraps,thoroughly American story.
Kirkus Reviews
“Charles Dickens has nothing on Jeannette Walls,author of 
The GlassCastle,
the unflinching story about her grueling,nomadic childhood.Dickens’scenes ofpoverty and hardship are no more audacious and nomore provocative than those in the pages ofthis stunning memoir.
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
An excellent book....Walls has a fantastic storytelling knack.
Publishers Weekly 
The Glass Castle
will at times exhaust you,occasionally fill you with fury,and finally leave you in slack-jawed wonderment.
 National Review Online
“Jeannette Walls has decided to tell all,and the result is this rivetingmemoir.”
Glamour 
“You’ll root for the Walls family.”
 Newsweek
The Glass Castle
is the kind ofstory that keeps you awake long after therest ofthe house has fallen asleep.
Vogue
 
 Te Glass Castle
 A Memoir
 Jeannette Walls
 Jeannette Walls grew up with parents whose ideals and stubborn non-conormity were both their curse and their salvation. Rex and Rose Mary  Walls had our children. In the beginning, they lived like nomads, mov-ing among Southwest desert towns, camping in the mountains. Rex was acharismatic, brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children’s imagi-nation, teaching them physics, geology, and above all, how to embracelie earlessly. Rose Mary, who painted and wrote and couldn’t stand theresponsibility o providing or her amily, called hersel an “excitement ad-dict.” Cooking a meal that would be consumed in teen minutes had noappeal when she could make a painting that might last orever.Later, when the money ran out, or the romance o the wandering lie aded,the Walls retreated to the dismal West Virginia mining town -- and theamily -- Rex Walls had done everything he could to escape. He drank. Hestole the grocery money and disappeared or days. As the dysunction o the amily escalated, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to end orthemselves, supporting one another as they weathered their parents’ betray-als and, nally, ound the resources and will to leave home. What is so astonishing about Jeannette Walls is not just that she had theguts and tenacity and intelligence to get out, but that she describes herparents with such deep aection and generosity. Hers is a story o triumphagainst all odds, but also a tender, moving tale o unconditional love in aamily that despite its proound faws gave her the ery determination tocarve out a successul lie on her own terms.For two decades, Jeannette Walls hid her roots. Now she tells her ownstory. A regular contributor to MSNBC.com, she lives in New York andLong Island and is married to the writer John aylor.

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Techblog added this note
so good
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Alexandria West added this note
Such a great story, Jeannett is soooo strong :)
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