Saturday, February 12, 2005


Marilynne Robinson's second novel is lovely, but I can't think of a whole lot to say about it.
I urge everyone to enjoy its quiet pleasures, its meditative prose, its reflections on life and fathers and sons and goodness and grace.
Written as a letter from a very old, dying father to his young son, Gilead reveals the history of a family of churchmen from the Civil War through the 1950s. The title is the name of the Iowa town in which they reside, but the story is only incidentally about the town, which was a safe haven for escaping slaves. Race has something to do with the story, but it would be misleading to say that Gilead is about race.
It's a perfect book for daily reflection.