Study Guide

The Glass Castle Home

By Jeannette Walls

Home

The Walls family lives a nomadic lifestyle. Their home, home on the range isn't where the deer and the antelope play; it's in cheap shacks across the southern and southwestern United States, where termites play in the walls and rats play in the children's beds. These dwellings are as far from "home sweet home" as a person can get. We'd love to say that the Walls family succeeds in making these hovels into warm homes, but they don't. For them, home is an idea that exists in the head and the heart, not a place they can find on a map. No Glass Castle here, folks.

Questions About Home

  1. What are Jeannette's criteria for calling a place a home?
  2. Does Jeannette form an emotional attachment to any place where she lives?
  3. Why are Mom and Dad okay with not having a stable home?

Chew on This

Jeannette has a stable home at the end of the novel, and it's a home that combines a solid house—no holes, no leaks, no electrocutions—with wilderness and land for a garden, combining two different ways her family lived when she was a girl.

The Walls parents are comfortable living as squatters because this aligns with their lifestyle. However, their children are tired of being nomadic, and they find a stable place in New York City to live together.