My Reading Life

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Bestselling author Pat Conroy acknowledges the books that have shaped him and celebrates the profound effect reading has had on his life.

Pat Conroy, the beloved American storyteller, is a voracious reader. Starting as a childhood passion that bloomed into a life-long companion, reading has been Conroy’s portal to the world, both to the farthest corners of the globe and to the deepest chambers of the human soul. His interests range widely, from Milton to Tolkien, Philip Roth to Thucydides, encompassing poetry, history, philosophy, and any mesmerizing tale of his native South. He has for years kept notebooks in which he records words and expressions, over time creating a vast reservoir of playful turns of phrase, dazzling flashes of description, and snippets of delightful sound, all just for his love of language. But for Conroy reading is not simply a pleasure to be enjoyed in off-hours or a source of inspiration for his own writing. It would hardly be an exaggeration to claim that reading has saved his life, and if not his life then surely his sanity.
 
In My Reading Life, Conroy revisits a life of reading through an array of wonderful and often surprising anecdotes: sharing the pleasures of the local library’s vast cache with his mother when he was a boy, recounting his decades-long relationship with the English teacher who pointed him onto the path of letters, and describing a profoundly influential period he spent  in Paris, as well as reflecting on other pivotal people, places, and experiences. His story is a moving and personal one, girded by wisdom and an undeniable honesty. Anyone who not only enjoys the pleasures of reading but also believes in the power of books to shape a life will find here the greatest defense of that credo.

BONUS: This ebook edition includes an excerpt from Pat Conroy's The Death of Santini.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Nan A. Talese
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Published on
Nov 2, 2010
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Pages
208
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ISBN
9780385533843
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Language
English
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Genres
Biography & Autobiography / Literary Figures
Biography & Autobiography / Personal Memoirs
Language Arts & Disciplines / Composition & Creative Writing
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Eligible for Family Library

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NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • “A brilliant storyteller, a master of sarcasm, and a hallucinatory stylist whose obsession with the impress of the past on the present binds him to Southern literary tradition.”—The Boston Globe 
 
Pat Conroy’s great success as a writer has always been intimately linked with the exploration of his family history. As the oldest of seven children who were dragged from military base to military base across the South, Pat bore witness to the often cruel and violent behavior of his father, Marine Corps fighter pilot Donald Patrick Conroy. While the publication of The Great Santini brought Pat much acclaim, the rift it caused brought even more attention, fracturing an already battered family. But as Pat tenderly chronicles here, even the oldest of wounds can heal. In the final years of Don Conroy’s life, the Santini unexpectedly refocused his ire to defend his son’s honor.
 
The Death of Santini is a heart-wrenching act of reckoning whose ultimate conclusion is that love can soften even the meanest of men, lending significance to the oft-quoted line from Pat’s novel The Prince of Tides: “In families there are no crimes beyond forgiveness.”
 
Praise for The Death of Santini
 
“A painful, lyrical, addictive read that [Pat Conroy’s] fans won’t want to miss.”—People
 
“Conroy’s conviction pulls you fleetly through the book, as does the potency of his bond with his family, no matter their sins.”—The New York Times Book Review
 
“Vital, large-hearted and often raucously funny.”—The Washington Post
 
“Conroy writes athletically and beautifully, slicing through painful memories like a point guard splitting the defense.”—Minneapolis Star Tribune
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