Housekeeping (Fortieth Anniversary Edition): A Novel (Paperback)

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Housekeeping (Fortieth Anniversary Edition): A Novel By Marilynne Robinson Cover Image

Housekeeping (Fortieth Anniversary Edition): A Novel (Paperback)


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Staff Reviews

A window in a lighted house at night becomes a mirror - a barrier that reifies, in its reflection, an alienated self. When Ruth and her sister, Lucille, come under the care of their Aunt Sylvie, a once and future transient, the lights of the house are extinguished, and all the barricades and boundaries of civilized life fall away. Sylvie's way of life, reconciled with and part of, seamlessly, the world around her, is alluring - will the girls follow in their aunt's footsteps?


— From Alia

"In the plain-spokenness of its language, the grace and dignity of its characters, the simplicity of its story and its intimations of spiritual transcendence, Housekeeping is a book that transformed how I see my place in the world." - David Marchese, The New York Times Magazine

Winner of the Pen/Hemingway Award

A modern classic, Marilynne Robinson's Housekeeping is the story of Ruth and her younger sister, Lucille, who grow up haphazardly, first under the care of their competent grandmother, then of two comically bumbling great-aunts, and finally of Sylvie, the eccentric and remote sister of their dead mother.

The family house is in the small town of Fingerbone on a glacial lake in the Far West, the same lake where their grandfather died in a spectacular train wreck and their mother drove off a cliff to her death. It is a town "chastened by an outsized landscape and extravagant weather, and chastened again by an awareness that the whole of human history had occurred elsewhere."

Ruth and Lucille's struggle toward adulthood beautifully illuminates the price of loss and survival, and the dangerous and deep undertow of transcience.

Marilynne Robinson is the author of Gilead, winner of the 2005 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award; Home (2008), winner of the Orange Prize and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize; Lila (2014), winner of the National Book Critics Circle Award; and Jack (2020), a New York Times bestseller. Her first novel, Housekeeping (1980), won the PEN/Hemingway Award. Robinson’s nonfiction books include The Givenness of Things (2015), When I Was a Child I Read Books (2012), Absence of Mind (2010), The Death of Adam (1998), and Mother Country (1989). She is the recipient of a 2012 National Humanities Medal, awarded by President Barack Obama, for “her grace and intelligence in writing.” Robinson lives in California
Product Details ISBN: 9781250769763
ISBN-10: 1250769760
Publisher: Picador
Publication Date: August 4th, 2020
Pages: 240
Language: English

“So precise, so distilled, so beautiful that one doesn't want to miss any pleasure it might yield.” —Le Anne Schreiber, The New York Times Book Review

“Here's a first novel that sounds as if the author has been treasuring it up all her life...You can feel in the book a gathering voluptuous release of confidence, a delighted surprise at the unexpected capacities of language, a close, careful fondness for people that we thought only saints felt.” —Anatole Broyard, The New York Times

“I found myself reading slowly, than more slowly--this is not a novel to be hurried through, for every sentence is a delight.” —Doris Lessing