Marilynne Robinson's Gilead Novels

 

Gilead

Twenty-four years after her first novel, Housekeeping, Marilyn Robinson returns with an intimate tale of three generations from the Civil War to the 20th century: a story about fathers and sons and the spiritual battles that still rage at America's heart. Writing in the tradition of Dickinson and Whitman, Marilynne Robinson's beautiful, spare, and spiritual prose allows "even the faithless reader to feel the possibility of transcendent order." (Slate) In the luminous and unforgettable voice of Congregationalist minister John Ames, Gilead, reveals the human condition and the often unbearable beauty of an ordinary life.
 

 

Home

Glory Boughton, aged thirty-eight, has returned to Gilead to care for her dying father, Reverend Robert Boughton. 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 his turbulent past. When he was a child he gained a reputation as artful and devious; as a young man he brought continual shame to the family; and now, 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. Jack forges an intense bond with Glory and engages painfully with Ames, his godfather and namesake, and the narrator of Robinson's previous novel Gilead. Home is a moving and healing book about families, family secrets, and the passing of the generations, about love and death and faith.

 

Lila

Marilynne Robinson, one of the greatest novelists of our time, returns to the town of Gilead in an unforgettable story of a girlhood lived on the fringes of society in fear, awe, and wonder.

Lila, homeless and alone after years of roaming the countryside, steps inside a small-town Iowa church—the only available shelter from the rain—and ignites a romance and a debate that will reshape her life. She becomes the wife of a minister, John Ames, and begins a new existence while trying to make sense of the days of suffering that preceded her newfound security.

Revisiting the beloved characters and setting of Robinson's Pulitzer Prize–winning Gilead and Home, a National Book Award finalist, Lila is a moving expression of the mysteries of existence that is destined to become an American classic.

 

Jack (available in paperback 4/6/21)

Marilynne Robinson’s mythical world of Gilead, Iowa―the setting of her novels Gilead, Home, and Lila, and now Jack―and its beloved characters have illuminated and interrogated the complexities of American history, the power of our emotions, and the wonders of a sacred world. Jack is Robinson’s fourth novel in this now-classic series. In it, Robinson tells the story of John Ames Boughton, the prodigal son of Gilead’s Presbyterian minister, and his romance with Della Miles, a high school teacher who is also the child of a preacher. Their deeply felt, tormented, star-crossed interracial romance resonates with all the paradoxes of American life, then and now.

Robinson’s Gilead novels, which have won one Pulitzer Prize and two National Book Critics Circle Awards, are a vital contribution to contemporary American literature and a revelation of our national character and humanity.

Marilynne Robinson's Gilead Novels

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