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What's worse, he does his best to turn the hugely driven young woman into a mistrusting, publicity-shy prig, not to mention helping her perfect her already anorexic bent. Maynard is such a skilled writer that it's hard not to take her side as the relationship falters. In fact, even when it's going well, it's not easy to sympathize with a man whose idea of an endearment is, "I couldn't have made up a character of a girl I'd love better than you." But Maynard is as hard on her younger self as she is on the great man. Though she had published intimate essays since her early teens, and long been feted for her "honesty," it has taken the overachiever many years to realize that she had carefully left out her most personal burdens--her father's alcoholism, her mother's nighttime "snuggling" and overwhelming intrusions, the distance between her and her older sister.
Still, At Home in the World is more than a clearing-house for past parental and amorous wrongs. It's a cautionary tale about using language and the pretense of truth to obscure key realities. One of the many curiosities in this discomfiting book? Salinger dreamt that he and Maynard had a child together: "I saw her face clearly. Her name was Bint." The World War II veteran then looks up the word. "What do you know," he says. "It's archaic British, for little girl." Maynard never, even now, has questioned his definition. In fact, it's slang, used especially in World War II, for prostitute. When Salinger forced the 19-year-old to clear her things out of his New Hampshire house, she was still unaware of the word's force. "On the window of Jerry's bedroom, where the glass is dusty, I write, with my finger, the name of the child we had talked about: BINT." --Kerry Fried --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
An honest account of Joyce, her vulnerability to author Salinger. I like "Catcher in the Rye" as a secondary school novel, even today teens can identify with it. Read morePublished 13 days ago by Mary Winfield
A well written memoir. After seeing the series on JD Salinger, I picked up Maynard's two books. This later memoir is her story and her reply to being picked up and discarded by... Read morePublished 18 days ago by carter paden
This is an incredibly raw and powerful memoir. I truly felt as if the author were speaking to me - her voice is so strong and authentic. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Pilgrim
Interesting if you want to hear from someone who knew Salinger very well. All through this book I was aware of how much Salinger would have hated every word and how angry he was... Read morePublished 1 month ago by KSreader
I love Joyce Maynard's novels, so I wanted to read this book I'd heard so much about. Her writing, as always, was gripping. I couldn't put the book down. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Mary Ellen Whitaker
Maynard was 18 years old, very intelligent, and a published author. She was not an innocent child. Salinger used his status and ability as a writer to attract a bright,... Read morePublished 2 months ago by The Thinker
I was first aware of Joyce Maynard when I read LOOKING BACK... in college. As someone who shared the same time frame as she, I was fascinated by her story and amazed by her... Read morePublished 4 months ago by caroline b