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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

4.5 (7016 )
5 star
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4.6 (6091 )
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4.5 (6077 )
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1 star
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Performance
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  •  
    aurelie 09-21-17
    aurelie 09-21-17 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Amazing story!"

    I couldn't stop listening to this book. What an amazing life and amazing story.
    My heart goes out for those children and I sometimes caught myself yelling at the parents.
    I recommend this book to everyone it is truly a roller coaster of emotions and shows that you can overcome anything.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    myadmire 09-20-17
    myadmire 09-20-17 Member Since 2015
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    1
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    "Just ok."

    It was ok. We listened to it on our last road trip. I guess you were supposed to get this overwhelming sense that the family loved each other, but they just seemed crazy and annoying to me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    shanon boston 09-20-17 Member Since 2017
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    "Fantastic!!!"

    Highly recommend this book. Grabbed me from the moment it started. I laughed, I cried, I related!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy 09-19-17
    Kathy 09-19-17 Member Since 2014

    Kathy Novian

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Disturbingly delightful"

    I was not expecting to connect with the author and her story personally. I was qute surprised I did. The inner conflict I had was between the outrage that this happens to children and thoroughly being entertained at the adventures the family went through in life.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Chelsea Staver 09-18-17 Member Since 2017
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    3
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    "Amazing. One of My Favorite Books of All Time"
    If you could sum up The Glass Castle in three words, what would they be?

    Captivating. Moving. Inspirational.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Glass Castle?

    The book is one fascinating story after another. It's impossible to put down. I plowed through this book in about 2 days. The childhood stories are almost too crazy to believe and the best part is the author's amazing writing. She is able to tell the stories almost as if she were still the same age as when they happened. It makes for a seamless read throughout her childhood.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    At the end of the book when the author reconciles with her dying father, I was in tears. The emotion really carries through her words.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes! This book was hard to put down. Every moment I found, I was listening to this book.


    Any additional comments?

    This is a must-read. The movie adaptation didn't get great reviews, but the book is incredible and so well told. It's a pleasure to hear the author read it herself, as well.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer Austin 09-18-17
    Amazon Customer Austin 09-18-17
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    "Painfully Good"

    How do families like this keep on loving each other so fiercly? For that I somehow admire the Walls. Cringeworthy yet inspiring. Read it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alicia 09-18-17
    Alicia 09-18-17 Member Since 2016
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    "intriguing"

    an intriguing and almost unbelievable story. It was hard to take a break once I reached my destination.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Breda Crank 09-18-17
    Breda Crank 09-18-17 Member Since 2017
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    4
    3
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    "I guess I'm missing something"

    I guess I'm going to be "that guy" and be a Debbie Downer and not give a rave review. It was just okay. Bestseller? Okay, if you say so. Movie deal? Apparently so. On top of just being okay, the narration is HORRIBLE. Which is puzzling because you think because it was the author herself but no. She read it in a sing-song way that made it hard to get through the book, not to mention her accent and what seems to be slight speech impediment that had me almost returning the book. I kept on though because of the 5 stars. Maybe this will be the first time I actually think the movie is better than the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    CLloyd 09-17-17
    CLloyd 09-17-17 Member Since 2012
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    "Sad yet triumphant."

    Just when we think we know what is good for people or family we know and love, we must take a look at ourselves and ask "What is really needed?" In the end, I believe it is only love and acceptance.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sam CINCINNATI, OH United States 09-16-17
    Sam CINCINNATI, OH United States 09-16-17 Member Since 2017

    Sam

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    "Best book I've read in a long time."

    Easy listening. Would recommend it to a friend. Wished that it had more content to read.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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