When I Was a Child I Read Books: Essays

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Farrar, Straus and Giroux, Mar 13, 2012 - Literary Collections - 224 pages
15 Reviews

Marilynne Robinson has built a sterling reputation as a writer of sharp, subtly moving prose, not only as a major American novelist, but also as a rigorous thinker and incisive essayist. In When I Was a Child I Read Books she returns to and expands upon the themes which have preoccupied her work with renewed vigor.

In "Austerity as Ideology," she tackles the global debt crisis, and the charged political and social political climate in this country that makes finding a solution to our financial troubles so challenging. In "Open Thy Hand Wide" she searches out the deeply embedded role of generosity in Christian faith. And in "When I Was a Child," one of her most personal essays to date, an account of her childhood in Idaho becomes an exploration of individualism and the myth of the American West. Clear-eyed and forceful as ever, Robinson demonstrates once again why she is regarded as one of our essential writers.


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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - LordKinbote - LibraryThing

This is the first I've read of Marilynne Robinson. In some respects, I can see why she is so well-regarded. She writes with elegance and lyricism, which makes me suspect I would enjoy her novels ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - 2wonderY - LibraryThing

The title made me curious. I hadn't intended to read the book, but just opening on a page randomly, Robinson's prose beckons. For not having heard of her before, I like her thought processes and arguments. I may even need to buy the book. Read full review

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Imagination and Community
Austerity as Ideology
When IWasaChild
The Human
Who Was Oberlin?

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About the author (2012)

Marilynne Robinson is the author of the novels Housekeeping (FSG, 1981), Gilead (FSG, 2004), winner of the Pulitzer Prize, and Home (FSG, 2008), and three books of nonfiction, Mother Country (FSG, 1989), The Death of Adam (1998) and Absence of Mind (2010). She teaches at the University of Iowa Writers' Workshop.

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