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House Hold: A Memoir of Place Hardcover – February 12, 2014
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A literature teacher and the daughter of an architect, Peters has a strong and compelling perspective on the sense of place in life and literature. She grew up in a modern house perched on a ledge in the woods of eastern Wisconsin. Designed by her father, it represented social striving and was meant to be “a map of an inventive mind” but remained at the nexus of family strife after her parents’ divorce. It set them apart from others and sparked a lifelong search for belonging. Peters ties her memories to great stories of small-town life by Edith Wharton, Theodore Dreiser, and others. Twenty years of living in New York evokes romantic notions about the city drawn from the writings of Willa Cather and Paule Marshall. Eventually, Peters buys a small house in upstate New York. All along, she ponders her constantly changing landscape, resenting changing and reluctantly conceding her participation in that change, resigning herself to living inside others’ history. Peters writes beautifully of the meaning of authenticity and the need to belong. --Vanessa Bush
"Nostalgia is a complicated version of love, Peters reveals in this elegiac memoir, which can threaten to fade the vivid present to a sepia-toned past."--Kirkus
"Peters writes beautifully of the meaning of authenticity and the need to belong....A strong and compelling perspective on the sense of place in life and literature." --Booklist
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Top customer reviews
A compelling, fun, and greatly affecting romp through life, literature, and architecture - I felt like I was led quickly and surely by the warm and capable human hands of a generous and brilliant guide always questioning: how did we get here and where do we belong?
Yes, the book is elegiac, nostalgic, melancholic... in the sense that Benjamin, Sebald, Hardwick (Sleepless Nights) and Marilyn Robinson (Housekeeping) are. House Hold is a dreamily written, deeply felt evocation of "memory come alive".
The book is about all of the above and more, and you will hope that Ann Peters is writing another book.
Most recent customer reviews
passages from American literature was an...Read more