January’s Book Club selection is The Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls.
A triumphant tale of a young woman and her difficult childhood, The Glass Castle is a remarkable memoir of
resilience, redemption, and a revelatory look into a family at once deeply dysfunctional and wonderfully vibrant. Jeannette Walls was the second of four children raised by anti-institutional parents in a household of extremes.
Their father, Rex Walls, was a charismatic and brilliant man who, when sober, captured his children’s imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and above all how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he would steal the grocery money and disappear for days, disappointing Jeannette, his biggest supporter, again and again. Their mother, a painter, a writer, a free-spirit who couldn’t stand the responsibility of providing for her family, called herself an “excitement addict.” She loved being on the brink of a new adventure and Rex Walls was always embarking on new ones, usually because he had to–because the rent was unpaid or he’d broken the law. And Jeannette and her brother and sisters were always taking on the household responsibilities, finding food, cleaning house, encouraging their parents to work, protecting one another and finally supporting each other as they moved out of their parents dysfunctional lives and finished their educations in New York. Their parents followed them to the city, eventually becoming homeless, even as their children prospered.
From the desert to San Francisco, from Las Vegas to a mining town in Appalachia, Rex and Mary Walls led their family on a nomadic journey- running from the police, escaping fires, ferreting food out of dumpsters. It was a childhood full of exciting adventures, dangerous accidents, heartbreaking betrayals and the intense love of a peculiar family that despite all of its many flaws gave Jeannette the fiery determination to carve out a successful
Date and Time: Tuesday, January 31st at 2 PM
Place: The book store Raconte Moi la Terre’s tearoom, 14 rue du Plat 69002 Lyon (near Place Bellecour)
Note: Let us know if you plan to attend so we can save enough chairs. They serve lunch there if you would like to come earlier. Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org.
February’s selection is the Sugar Men by Ray Kingfisher