At Home in the World: A Memoir

Front Cover
Picador, Apr 1, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 352 pages

New York Times bestselling author of Labor Day
With a New Preface

When it was first published in 1998, At Home in the World set off a furor in the literary world and beyond. Joyce Maynard's memoir broke a silence concerning her relationship—at age eighteen—with J.D. Salinger, the famously reclusive author of The Catcher in the Rye, then age fifty-three, who had read a story she wrote for The New York Times in her freshman year of college and sent her a letter that changed her life. Reviewers called her book "shameless" and "powerful" and its author was simultaneously reviled and cheered.

With what some have viewed as shocking honesty, Maynard explores her coming of age in an alcoholic family, her mother's dream to mold her into a writer, her self-imposed exile from the world of her peers when she left Yale to live with Salinger, and her struggle to reclaim her sense of self in the crushing aftermath of his dismissal of her not long after her nineteenth birthday. A quarter of a century later—having become a writer, survived the end of her marriage and the deaths of her parents, and with an eighteen-year-old daughter of her own—Maynard pays a visit to the man who broke her heart. The story she tells—of the girl she was and the woman she became—is at once devastating, inspiring, and triumphant.

 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Eye_Gee - LibraryThing

I have to give this memoir 4 stars because I could hardly put it down once I started it. The fact that the author's life was a train wreck, and that I felt like a voyeur reading it at times, takes ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Y2Ash - LibraryThing

At Home in the World is a brutally honest memoir by Joyce Maynard. She describes her early life with highly accomplished parents; her father was an alcoholic and her mother a housewife. Both wanted to ... Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Introduction
1
Chapter One
9
Chapter Two
53
Chapter Three
66
Chapter Four
90
Chapter Five
101
Chapter Six
119
Chapter Seven
134
Chapter Fifteen
236
Chapter Sixteen
253
Chapter Seventeen
267
Chapter Eighteen
273
Chapter Nineteen
279
Chapter Twenty
286
Chapter Twentyone
294
Chapter Twentytwo
301

Chapter Eight
156
Chapter Nine
167
Chapter Ten
180
Chapter Eleven
187
Chapter Twelve
202
Chapter Thirteen
211
Chapter Fourteen
228
Chapter Twentythree
312
Chapter Twentyfour
319
Chapter Twentyfive
333
Chapter Twentysix
337
Afterword
349
Copyright

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About the author (2010)

Joyce Maynard was born and raised in New Hampshire. She is the author of several books, including To Die For, Where Love Goes, Domestic Affairs, Baby Talk, and her memoir Looking Back, which she wrote at the age of eighteen. Joyce Maynard has written for many national publications, including The New York Times Magazine, Parenting and Good Housekeeping. She lives in Mill Valley, California, with her three children.

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