Publishers Weekly reviews 'The Longest Trip Home'
Monday, September 01, 2008
This starred review appeared today in Publishers Weekly magazine. I was thrilled to see the star beside it. Back in 2005, Publishers Weekly gave Marley & Me a positive review, but the coveted PW star eluded me. So this made my Labor Day.
Here's PW's review:
(Starred) The Longest Trip Home John Grogan. Morrow, $25.95 (336p) ISBN 978-0-06-171324-8
Grogan follows up Marley & Me with a hilarious and touching memoir of his childhood in suburban Detroit.
"To say my parents were devout Catholics is like saying the sun runs a little hot," he writes. "It defined who they were." Grogan and his three siblings grew up in a house full of saints' effigies, attended a school run by ruler-wielding nuns and even spent family vacations at religious shrines, chapels and monasteries. Grogan defied his upbringing through each coming-of-age milestone: his first impure thoughts, which he couldn't bare to divulge at his First Confession (the priest was a family friend); his first buzz from the communion wine he chugged with his fellow altar boys; and his coming to know women in the biblical sense. As Grogan matured, his unease with Church doctrine grew, and he realized he'd never share his parents' religious zeal.
Telling them he's joined the ranks of the nonpracticing Catholics, however, is much easier said than done, even in adulthood. At 30, he fell in love with a Protestant, moved in with her and then married her -- a sequence of events that crushed his parents. In this tenderly told story, Grogan considers the rift between the family he's made and the family that made him --and how to bridge the two. (Oct.)
posted by John Grogan at 5:20 PM