The plan was to read Half-Broke Horses next. Then I found out Jeannette Walls had written another memoir first, and since I like to read books in order, I quit HBH about 20 pages in, and picked up The Glass Castle.
I honestly didn't know if I should laugh or cry, be horrified or amused. Jeanette Walls takes us on a journey through her childhood that makes her readers feel as if we are on the journey with her. Rose Mary and Rex Walls are the parents of 4 children, and it's a miracle those kids survived into adulthood. Rex was an alcoholic whose money-making schemes almost always resulted in the family having to sneak out of town in the middle of the night. Rose Mary has an interesting outlook on life, but has never grown up. She's more concerned with not wanting to prove her mother right than she is with the welfare of her children. I hated Rex and Rose Mary for the way they neglected their kids, but as I read how their lives turned out, I realized that I had inexplicably fallen in love with them.
Jeanette and her sisters and brother are an intelligent, resilient, and admirable group of people who survived incredibly depressing childhoods. I have a feeling that The Glass Castle is just a quick overview of what their lives were like growing up, and they could each fill an entire library with their stories.
Read the book, thank your parents, and hug your children.
Up Next: Suite Francaise