Cover of: Gilead | Marilynne Robinson

About the Book

WINNER OF THE 2005 PULITZER PRIZE FOR FICTION

In 1956, toward the end of Reverend John Ames’s life, he begins a letter to his young son, an account of himself and his forebears. Ames is the son of an Iowan preacher and the grandson of a minister who, as a young man in Maine, saw a vision of Christ bound in chains and came west to Kansas to fight for abolition: He “preached men into the Civil War,” then, at age fifty, became a chaplain in the Union Army, losing his right eye in battle.

Reverend Ames writes to his son about the tension between his father—an ardent pacifist—and his grandfather, whose pistol and bloody shirts, concealed in an army blanket, may be relics from the fight between the abolitionists and those settlers who wanted to vote Kansas into the union as a slave state. And he tells a story of the sacred bonds between fathers and sons, which are tested in his tender and strained relationship with his namesake, John Ames Boughton, his best friend’s wayward son.

Gilead is the long-hoped-for second novel by one of our finest writers, a hymn of praise and lamentation to the God-haunted existence that Reverend Ames loves passionately, and from which he will soon part.

First Sentence

I told you last night that I might be gone sometime, and you said, Where, and I said, To be with the Good Lord, and you said, Why, and I said, Because I'm old, and you said, I don't think you're old.

ID Numbers

Open Library
OL7423074M
Internet Archive
gilead00robi_0
ISBN 10
0374153892
ISBN 13
9780374153892
Library Thing
16914
Goodreads
77509
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History

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March 6, 2012 Edited by ImportBot import new book
December 13, 2011 Edited by ImportBot import new book
August 5, 2010 Edited by IdentifierBot added LibraryThing ID
April 24, 2010 Edited by Open Library Bot Fixed duplicate goodreads IDs.
April 29, 2008 Created by an anonymous user Inital record created, from an amazon.com record.