The Jack Maddox Distinguished Lecture Series Announces Author, Jeannette Walls, as Fall Speaker

Check out the story about Walls in the New York Times.

Critics have called Jeannette Walls’ memoir, The Glass Castle, “spectacular,” “extraordinary,” “incredible,” and “riveting.” It has been a New York Times best-seller for more than four years, has sold 3.5 million copies in the US alone and has been translated into 22 languages. It was named one of the “Top 10 Books of the Decade” by Amazon, and has won numerous awards including the Christopher Award, the American Library Association’s Alex Award, and the Books for Better Living Award.

Walls will be the guest speaker at the Jack Maddox Distinguished Lecture Series on OCTOBER 1, 2013 at 7:00 p.m., at Tydings Auditorium in Hobbs. Tickets will be available beginning in August and you may reserve yours by contacting Laurie Dean at or by phone at 575-492-2108. Tickets are FREE but required to attend.

In The Glass Castle, Walls describes growing up in the desert of the American Southwest and then in a West Virginia mining town with her three siblings and the brilliant, unorthodox, irresponsible parents who manage at once to neglect them, love them, and teach them to face their fears.

The story is at times harrowing and at times hilarious as the children go without food and indoor plumbing yet are encouraged to read Shakespeare and dream of the beautiful glass house they will all one day build. Despite all her hardships, Walls develops the determination to leave West Virginia on her own at the age of sixteen, move to New York City, enroll in Barnard College and eventually become a well-known columnist for New York magazine and and a television personality.

This inspirational book has been taught at universities in courses on literature, psychology, parenting, child development, and poverty. Walls has spoken at colleges, corporations, and business associations about overcoming hardship and the keys to turning adversity to your advantage.

Rosie O’Donnell called The Glass Castle “a beautiful, brave, transformative book….The best book I’ve read in years.” And the Atlanta Constitution said, “Charles Dickens has nothing on Jeannette Walls…Dickens’s scenes of poverty and hardship are no more audacious and no more provocative than those in the pages of this stunning memoir.”

Walls lives in the Virginia piedmont with her husband, the writer John Taylor. She has appeared on Prime Time Live, Good Morning America, Larry King Live, Oprah, and the Diane Rheem Show.

Her follow-up to The Glass Castle, Half Broke Horses: A True Life Novel, was released in October 2009, and was an immediate New York Times best-seller. It has been selected by Independent Book Sellers as their “Best Read” for October, and was called “essential reading” by Library Journal.

Her next book, The Silver Star will be released in June 2013.