Gilead

4 books in series
4.5 out of 5 stars 190 ratings

Gilead Summary

Pulitzer Prize, Fiction, 2005

National Book Critics Circle Award, Fiction, 2005

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 50, 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.

This is also the tale of another remarkable vision, not a corporeal vision of God but the vision of life as a wondrously strange creation. It tells how wisdom was forged in Ames's soul during his solitary life, and how history lives through generations, pervasively present even when betrayed and forgotten.

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.

©2004 Marilynne Robinson (P)2005 BBC Audiobooks America, Published by Audio Renaissance, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishers, LLC
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  • Book 1

    • Gilead

    • By: Marilynne Robinson
    • Narrated by: Tim Jerome
    • Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 1
    • Performance
      5 out of 5 stars 1
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 1

    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 50, became a chaplain in the Union Army, losing his right eye in battle.

    Regular price: £22.99

    • Gilead

    • By: Marilynne Robinson
    • Narrated by: Tim Jerome
    • Length: 8 hrs and 53 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4 out of 5 stars 110
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 84
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 84

    From the author of Housekeeping, Gilead is the long-hoped-for second novel by one of America's finest writers.

    Chosen by the New York Times Book Review as one of the top six novels of 2004.

    In 1956, toward the end of Reverend John Ames' life, he begins a letter to his young son, a kind of last testament to his remarkable forebears.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • A salve to the soul and a joy

    • By clive on 22-11-14

    Regular price: £19.99

  • Book 2

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  • Book 3

    • Lila: A Novel

    • By: Marilynne Robinson
    • Narrated by: Maggie Hoffman
    • Length: 8 hrs and 57 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 79
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 74
    • Story
      4 out of 5 stars 75

    Lila, homeless and alone after years of roaming the countryside, steps inside a small-town Iowa church - the only available shelter from the rain - and ignites a romance and a debate that will reshape her life. She becomes the wife of a minister, John Ames, and begins a new existence while trying to make sense of the life that preceded her newfound security. Neglected as a toddler, Lila was rescued by Doll, a canny young drifter, and brought up by her in a hardscrabble childhood.

    • 5 out of 5 stars
    • Brilliant

    • By Eileen Scholes on 19-11-17

    Regular price: £26.29