Wednesday, June 29, 2011


Author: Margaret Robison
Genre: Memoir, Standalone
Published: 2011
Personal Rating: 3.5/5 (good)
Format: Book
Yearly Count:  54

From the back of the ARC:

Beginning with Margaret Robison's childhood in southern Georgia, with its facade of 1950s propriety masking all sorts of demons--alcoholism, s*xual repression, misogyny, and suicide--then taking us through her mental breakdown and, more recently, her recovery from a massive stroke, The Long Journey Home is Robison's attempt to make sense of a complicated, often tortured, complex American life.  She writes movingly and honestly about her shortcomings as a parent, her difficult marriage, and her two now-famous children.  An accomplished poet and artist, Robison tells the painful but ultimately uplifting story of a woman trapped by social convention in a time when escaping cultural expectations was harder than most of us can remember.  Hers is a beautiful, heartfelt, enduring story.

The most prevalent feeling I am left with after closing this book is gloominess. Yet, I also feel a little sympathy towards Margaret, and part of me wants to applaud her because she didn't stoop to a lower level and lash out at her son's (Augusten Burrough) memories in his many published books (one of which I read). She expressed her disappointment and spoke the truth as she saw it in response, but still loves her son unconditionally. That speaks volumes to me.

While the writing was somewhat disjointed or scattered at times, for the most part it maintained my attention. I admit that I did try to correlate my knowledge from Augusten's book with what Margaret was sharing and came away with bits and pieces that I imagined fit. However, I was well aware that this was Margaret's memoir, and this was her perception of her life experiences. I appreciated that she stated, more than once, when she had forgotten something or that to the best of her recollection this happened or that happened. She does not try to persuade the reader in any way.

Ultimately, a bit of a blah read, but she did and continues to persevere. I wish her success with this book, health and happiness.

My thanks go to the publisher and TLC Book Tours for sending me this ARC.

Margaret Robison's TLC Book Tours TOUR STOPS:

Wednesday, June 1st:  Well Read Wife
Thursday, June 2nd:  The Girl from the Ghetto
Monday, June 6th:  Books Like Breathing
Tuesday, June 7th:  Life in Review
Thursday, June 9th:  Silver and Grace
Monday, June 13th:  Reviews by Lola
Monday, June 20th:  Sara’s Organized Chaos
Friday, June 24th:  Chaotic Compendiums
Monday, June 27th:  The Book Lady’s Blog – guest post
Thursday, June 30th:  Rundpinne
Thursday, July 7th:  SMS Book Reviews
Friday, July 8th:  Colloquium
Friday, July 15th:  Thoughts of Joy


  1. I wasn't crazy about Running with Scissors, but my mother loved it. I think I'll get her this book.

  2. Oh too bad that it was a blah read... guess still be interesting to see things from her perspective.

  3. I think they're both a bit twisted!! Excellent review of this one and just goes to show how perception is everything! It's amazing how each person experienced the same thing but express it with such different views!

  4. Anonymous12:22 PM

    I like how you picked bits and pieces from each book and fit them together to make a picture that made sense to you.

    Thanks for being on the tour.

  5. Bermudaonion ~ That'd be great for her to read about "the other side of the pancake."

    Christa ~ It was interesting, but it was all about her and not about a rebuttal of her sons' books.

    Staci ~ You made me laugh!

    Heathertic ~ Thanks. I'm glad I read it. I would have stayed curious forever if I didn't. :)

  6. Comments from deleted preview post:

    Staci said...
    Looking forward to it!
    8:05 PM

    Thoughts of Joy said...
    Staci ~ Kinda weird to post that, but I wanted my count to be accurate. :)
    10:42 AM

    christa @ mental foodie said...
    oh I can't wait to read your review on this one! I'd read all but one books but Augusten Burroughs (didn't read the fiction) and had read Christopher Robison's memoir also. Be interesting to hear from her perspective!
    10:22 PM


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