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The Glass Castle Audiobook
The Glass Castle
Written by: 
Jeannette Walls
Narrated by: 
Jeannette Walls
The Glass Castle Audiobook

The Glass Castle: A Memoir [Audiobook]

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Publisher's Summary

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 15 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.

For two decades, Jeannette Walls hid her roots. Now she tells her own story. A regular contributor to MSNBC.com, she lives in New York and Long Island and is married to the writer John Taylor.

©2005 Jeannette Walls (P)2010 Simon and Schuster Audio

What the Critics Say

"Jeannette Walls has carved a story with precision and grace out of one of the most chaotic, heartbreaking childhoods ever to be set down on the page. This deeply affecting memoir is a triumph in every possible way, and it does what all good books should: it affirms our faith in the human spirit." (Dani Shapiro, author of Family History)

"The Glass Castle is the saga of the restless, indomitable Walls family, led by a grand eccentric and his tempestuous artist wife. Jeannette Walls has survived poverty, fires, and near starvation to triumph. She has written this amazing tale with honesty and love." (Patricia Bosworth, author of Anything Your Little Heart Desires and Diane Arbus: A Biography)

"Just read the first pages of The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls, and I defy you not to go on. It's funny and sad and quirky and loving. I was incredibly touched by it." (Dominick Dunne, author of The Way We Lived Then: Recollections of a Well-Known Name Dropper)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.4 (2929 )
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Performance
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  •  
    DIANE Thornhill,, Ontario, Canada 03-24-11
    DIANE Thornhill,, Ontario, Canada 03-24-11 Member Since 2015

    I am an avid "reader"- I prefer to listen to books rather than read them due to the added dimension added by the narrator.

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "What a story!"

    It is hard to believe that people lead lives such as the one Walls narrates in this book. That a person can have an upbringing such as the one she had and turn out capable and well-adjusted is nothing short of a miracle. I loved that Jeanette developed strength from adversity and was inspired by her.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Missy D 04-30-15
    Missy D 04-30-15 Member Since 2013
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    "Why was this a best seller"

    If was a very sad story of unchecked mental illness child abuse and sexual molestation for many years. The children were the adults.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wendelyn 07-07-13
    Wendelyn 07-07-13 Member Since 2006
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Take a pass on this one."
    What would have made The Glass Castle better?

    Professional Narrator


    Would you ever listen to anything by Jeannette Walls again?

    I did listen to Half Broke Horses, which I liked much better, but I probably would not listen to anything else without a very good recommendation. I really did NOT like this book, at all!


    What didn’t you like about Jeannette Walls’s performance?

    I think as the author she is too close to the story, and has only limited performance skills.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    It was a waste of time. I did not find it entertaining or enlightening, just depressing and dismal.


    Any additional comments?

    Ms. Walls life story certainly suggests she has done well from difficult beginnings, but honestly there was just too much of the irresponsible mother and father who simply could not be bothered to raise or care for their children once they'd gotten around to having them.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Xavier Lopez 07-21-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Great book"

    This was an interesting story with a great narration. It was a very intriguing and captivating story to listen to while simultaneously being productive. I would recommend this to anyone who is interested in well written memoirs.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeanne Molloy 07-21-16 Member Since 2012
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    "WOW!!! Awesome book"

    This was an incredible story! I admire the drive and persistence of the author and her siblings. They were truly blessed with spirit and fortitude to overcome. Read this book and appreciate what you have

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Stephanie Anne Graham San Diego, California United States 07-15-16
    Stephanie Anne Graham San Diego, California United States 07-15-16 Member Since 2015
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    "What a listen"

    Dark but tender read . You will have compassion for children growing up in such chaos And compassion for the parents who's madness and different mind set drives the story

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jeb P. 07-14-16
    Jeb P. 07-14-16 Member Since 2014
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    "Great read!"

    I laughed, I cried, I became furious, I even found myself speaking out loud to the author. This is a truly unbelievable memoir. You'll love it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Errily 07-13-16
    Errily 07-13-16 Member Since 2016
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    1
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    "A great read ruined by the narrator"

    I really enjoyed reading the book, it's a shame the audible version wasn't done by a professional narrator... ugh... she ruined it...

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gail Drago 07-12-16
    Gail Drago 07-12-16 Member Since 2014
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    "The Glass Castle"

    Jeannette Walls in her memoir, The Glass Castle, paints a different picture of those to choose to live outside the box. She paints a vivid picture of her parents and their dual decision to reject the conventional trappings of society. Both self-obsessed, they gave birth to a band of offspring--never children, always adults.

    On a personal level, there were parts of this book that struck chords vaguely familiar--a long time ago when every need was justified by a hard lesson learned.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gibson 07-11-16
    Gibson 07-11-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Loved every single thing about this book!"

    I loved this book! I'm so glad it was read by Author! Truly one of my favorite books ever!!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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