Book of the Week #42

At Home in the World: A Memoir by Joyce Maynard (NY: Piucador, 1998)

Writer Joyce Maynard grew up in Durham, NH and when her daughter was 18 she decided it was time to tell the story of her own life, including the time she spent living with J. D. Salinger.
"For all those years, I had never looked critically at Jerry Salinger. I had always believed I owed him my never-ending silence, loyalty, and protection. It came to me as a new thought that the girl he had invited into his life with that first letter he wrote deserved certain things, too.
All my life I had been trying to make sense of my experiences without understanding a crucial piece of my history. I couldn't have said, two years ago, what it was in how I had lived before meeting Jerry Salinger that made his power over me so vast and enduring. I couldn't have said how the events of that year I spent with Jerry shaped what I went on to do with my life. Now it was hitting me in the image of my daughter. All these years, I had been holding on to secrets that kept me from understanding or explaining myself. I knew it was time at last to explore my story." (from the Introduction, p. 7-8)

This book was reissued by Picador Press last month.

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