Review of the Glass Castle

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The Glass Castle written by Jeannette Walls is a remarkable true story of a family and the problems they face because of poverty. This two hundred and eighty eight page book is a truly inspiring and astonishing memoir. This book was published in 2005 and has spent more than three years on the New York Times bestseller list. This book would be great for high school students for many reasons. For one high school students aren’t exposed to memoirs very often. Secondly, it’s a more modern piece of literature which is a refreshing break from all the older pieces literature we tend to read in school. Third, it’s a great book for sparking class discussion.

To begin with, The Glass Castle is a memoir that follows Jeannette Walls and her family. Throughout the book Jeannette, her brother and sisters, and her parents move throughout the southwest living in all kinds of different places, but no matter where they go they are always facing poverty. Rex, Jeannette’s father, is a brilliant man, who when sober, taught Jeannette and her sisters and brother physics, geology, and most of all, how to take on life courageously. Rose Mary, Jeannette’s mother, who painted and wrote, could not handle the responsibility of providing for her family. She would often spend money on art supplies rather than feeding her children and when they did have food they did not eat well. “Jack mackerel was not as good as tuna but was better than cat food, which we ate from time to time when things got really tight.” (p. 171) Later, when the money ran out, the Walls’ moved to a West Virginia mining town. While the Walls’ were in Blyth West Virginia Rex drank, stole the grocery money and disappeared for days. As the dysfunction of the family spiraled out of control, Jeannette and her brother and sisters had to fend for themselves, supporting one another as they took on their parents' lies one after another and, finally, found the means and will to leave home.

Moreover, the genre of this...
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