Home – Marilynne Robinson

Marilynne Robinson makes you weep in her novels.

Home is the story of a family. Glory has come back to Gilead to take care of her ailing father. Going through the old house, she comes across many memories from the past and flood back to her, or her siblings, friends, and neighbours. She can’t his it very well though, she is the one in the family that doesn’t his her emotions easily…and cries at the drop of a hat.

Jack, her brother comes home finally. When Jack was younger, he felt he wasn’t part of the family ever, he was the loner, always going on his own adventures, and getting into trouble. Until, the facts of their father ill and soon to die, makes them all come to the house in Gilead, to pay final respects, and visit with dad.

Glory and Jack haven’t had the greatest of relationships to begin with, but as the days go by, they get closer and closer to the point that Jack is asking Glory for advice. As the story progresses, and Jack’s problems or at least some of them come to light – Alcoholism, Shame, Depression, they try to forge some kind of forgiveness, and absolution from the past deeds, and hope to move on.

Home was a poignant, heartbreaking novel. I could feel some pasts events in my own life come through the book; and feel what I felt when it was happening to me. Home takes you slowly and swiftly into the story and makes you want to embrace the characters in their times of pain and suffering.

Although, all of their problems aren’t solved in the end it gives you pause for thought.

A great book, I will be looking for Gilead and Housekeeping to read as well.


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