Home by Marilynne Robinson
A Novel

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Synopsis

Hundreds of thousands were enthralled by the luminous voice of John Ames in Gilead, Marilynne Robinson's Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Home is an entirely independent, deeply affecting novel that takes place concurrently in the same locale, this time in the household of Reverend Robert Boughton, Ames's closest friend.

Glory Boughton, aged thirty-eight, has returned to Gilead to care for her dying father. Soon her brother, Jack--the prodigal son of the family, gone for twenty years--comes home too, looking for refuge and trying to make peace with a past littered with tormenting trouble and pain.

Jack is one of the great characters in recent literature. A bad boy from childhood, an alcoholic who cannot hold a job, he is perpetually at odds with his surroundings and with his traditionalist father, though he remains Boughton's most beloved child. Brilliant, lovable, and wayward, Jack forges an intense bond with Glory and engages painfully with Ames, his godfather and namesake.

Home is a moving and healing book about families, family secrets, and the passing of the generations, about love and death and faith. It is Robinson's greatest work, an unforgettable embodiment of the deepest and most universal emotions.

Home is a 2008 National Book Award Finalist for Fiction.

 

About Marilynne Robinson

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Marilynne Robinson is the author of Gilead, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Housekeeping, winner of the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award. Home received the Orange Prize, the L.A. Times Book Prize, and was a finalist for the National Book Award. Robinson’s nonfiction books include Absence of Mind, The Death of Adam, and Mother Country, which was nominated for a National Book Award. She teaches at the University of Iowa Writers’ Workshop and lives in Iowa City.
 
Published September 1, 2008 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux. 336 pages
Genres: Religion & Spirituality, Literature & Fiction, Mystery, Thriller & Suspense. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Home

Publishers Weekly

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Robinson's third novel, and second returning to the Iowan home of ministers John Ames and Robert Boughton, is a conflict between the responsible father and his prodigal son. Robinson's st

Nov 24 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

Publishers Weekly

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Robinson's beautiful new novel, a companion piece to her Pulitzer Prize–winning Gilead , is an elegant variation on the parable of the prodigal son

Jun 30 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

The New York Times

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Marilynne Robinson revisits the events of her novel “Gilead” from another perspective.

Sep 21 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

The Guardian

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In Home, which is told in the third person but from a Boughton perspective, we see Ames as an angrier, less charitable man, and we know that Jack is actually nervous of him and desperate for his approval.

Oct 05 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

The Guardian

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The prodigal son Jack, "a child who didn't feel at home in the house where he was born", and is both sinned against and sinning, has returned after two decades, unable to mention the baby girl he abandoned and who died in his absence.

Jun 05 2009 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

The Guardian

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Home is less epic in its intentions, and thus rather less intellectually ambitious, and less profound, than Gilead: what gave Jack's story such resonance in the first novel was its contrapuntal relationship to Ames's story of America's embattled racial history.

Oct 03 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

BC Books

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Does this story sound familiar? The year is 1956, and a minister in Gilead, Iowa is in failing heal...Marilynne Robinson's new novel tells the exact same story as her last novel. What's going on here?

Sep 02 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

BC Books

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Although the novel is written in the third person, Glory is the only character whose innermost thoughts are laid bare in Robinson’s narrative.

Sep 02 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

BC Books

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But here is the surprise: Robinson relies on the same story for her new novel Home.

Sep 02 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

NPR

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Marilynne Robinson tackles questions of faith and family in her new novel, Home. A companion piece to the Pulitzer Prize-winning Gilead, Home sets the tale of the prodigal son in small-town Iowa.

Sep 20 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

AV Club

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Marilynne Robinson's sequel to Gilead took 20 fewer years to write, but it's no less rich and wonderful.

Sep 17 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

AV Club

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Twenty-four years passed between Marilynne Robinson's stunning debut Housekeeping and her second novel, Gilead.

Sep 17 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

The Telegraph

the small events of the narrative - neighbourly visits, church attendance, small excursions into the countryside around Gilead, the house and garden tended, the ailing person of Robert Boughton comforted, the contemplation of their shared and individual pasts by the actors in the narrative - echo...

Sep 28 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

The Telegraph

small group of characters living in a small town - Gilead, Iowa - during a .

Sep 28 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

Bookmarks Magazine

Mark Athitakis Washington Post 3.5 of 5 Stars "The publisher claims these two novels can be read separately, but that’s not fair to the profound relationship between them nor, I think, to the way Home depends on its predecessor for detail and resonance.

Sep 01 2008 | Read Full Review of Home: A Novel

Oprah.com

In her aptly titled Home (Farrar, Straus and Giroux), Jack Boughton, the prodigal son of an aging paterfamilias, returns after 20 years to live with his sister Glory and their dying father.

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https://www.spiritualityandpractice.com

And if the child becomes a man who has no respect for himself, it's just destroyed till you can hardly remember what it was — ' " In such intense scenes Robinson nails down the pain and the anguish in father and son clashes.

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Reader Rating for Home
72%

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