Gilead, Marilynne Robinson’s Pulitzer Prize–winning novel. Home is an entirely independent, deeply affecting novel that takes place concurrently in the same locale, this time in the household of Reverend Robert Boughton, Ames’s closest friend.
Glory Boughton, aged thirty-eight, has returned to Gilead to care for her dying father. Soon her brother, Jack—the prodigal son of the family, gone for twenty years—comes home too, looking for refuge and trying to make peace with a past littered with tormenting trouble and pain.
Jack is one of the great characters in recent literature. A bad boy from childhood, an alcoholic who cannot hold a job, he is perpetually at odds with his surroundings and with his traditionalist father, though he remains Boughton’s most beloved child. Brilliant, lovable, and wayward, Jack forges an intense bond with Glory and engages painfully with Ames, his godfather and namesake.
Home demonstrates that quiet prose can contain ecstasies and quiet souls dramas of raging moral intensity. A faithful daughter and a prodigal son return to their childhood home, where their clergyman father is dying, to reacquaint not only with one another but with the demands of forgiveness. Marilynne Robinson's fiction grapples with such issues as the nature of goodness and the limits of understanding, bringing to its explorations a spiritual precision and redemptive beauty.