The theme for the month of July for the #FUCHSIASummerBookClub 2019 is “TYRANNOUS PURSUITS”. Thus, the first book we read this month was ‘The Glass Castle’ by Jeannette Walls. ** SPOILERS AHEAD**
What Is ‘The Glass Castle’ About?
In twenty-five years, I told myself, I’d be as old as she was now. I had no idea what my life would be like then, but as I gathered up my schoolbooks and walked out the door, I swore to myself that it would never be like Mom’s, that I would not be crying my eyes out in an unheated shack in some godforsaken holler.
‘The Glass Castle’ is a memoir by Jeannette Walls (a former gossip columnist for MSNBC.com) chronicling her unique and often times, unbelievable, childhood. Her story is of overcoming adversity growing up and taking on the world on her own.
Jeannette grew up with a mother who valued artistic pursuits over the welfare of her kids and an alcoholic father who had larger than life dreams that he failed to accomplish. Thus, the family (with four kids) lived an unstable nomadic life, moving from one small, dark, dingy town to the next in hopes of finding their next big adventure! As Jeannette and her siblings grew older and realised their parents had their own beasts to conquer, they set out on their own individual adventures and came out triumphant!
It’s a success story in other, more ordinary terms. A Phoenix rising from the ashes, that is the imagery you get while your’e reading ‘The Glass Castle’. It is definitely a book that I’ll be recommending to fellow bibliophiles in the future.
There’s No Shame In Eating From The Trash
When other girls came in and threw away their lunch bags in the garbage pail, I’d go retrieve them … There was, at times, more food in the wastebasket than I could eat…
On of the most thought provoking instances from the book is reading how the Walls family scavenged for food. When we’re well fed and well clothed, we don’t pay heed to the people that go without. Jeannette’s account sheds a very human light on what it’s like to go hungry. When you can’t take help from people because they’ll think you’re poor and weak, and you have to bear your plight in silence – that is indeed, one of the most difficult situations that anyone can ever experience.
Recounting The Sexual Abuse
The most bewildering instance in the book was when Jeannette recounts the sexual harassment she and her family faced at the hands of strangers and family. From her grandmother allegedly molesting her father, to her uncle trying to inappropriately touch her – she didn’t hold back in expressing her utter disgust. When Jeanette finally decides to tell her mother, she has a very blasé attitude about the entire ordeal. She brushes it off as if it were another burden women had to bear silently in life. Naturally, that ruffled my feathers quite a bit…
…She said that sexual assault was a crime of perception. “If you don’t think you’re hurt, then you aren’t,” she said. “So many women make such a big deal out of these things. But you’re stronger than that.” She went back to her crossword puzzle…
Have You Read ‘The Glass Castle’?
If you’ve read ‘The Glass Castle’ we’d like to hear what you have to say. You can participate by sharing your reviews or favourite quotes from the book (up to 120 words) using #FUCHSIASummerBookClub 2019 on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. Do remember to tag us in your posts. Additionally, you can email your review to us at Info@fuchsia.com.sg with your contact details and the subject “FUCHSIA Summer Book Club”.
We’ll be sharing your opinions at the end of each month. Moreover, we’ll be choosing a winner based on the most interesting review to receive a gift voucher (courtesy of Team Fuchsia). So get your reading glasses on and READY. SET. READ!
Contest is open to citizens of Pakistan only. By entering you’re verifying that you’re at least 18 years of age or have the permission of your parent/guardian to share your contact details and mailing address. Decisions made are final and not open to dispute.