The Longest Trip Home: Book summary and reviews of The Longest Trip Home by John Grogan

The Longest Trip Home

A Memoir

By John Grogan

The Longest Trip Home
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  • Published in USA  Nov 2008,
    352 pages.

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Book Summary

In his debut bestseller, Marley & Me, John Grogan showed how a dog can become an extraordinary presence in the life of one family. Now, in his highly anticipated follow-up, Grogan again works his magic, bringing us the story of what came first.

Before there was Marley, there was a gleefully mischievous boy growing up in a devout Catholic home outside Detroit in the 1960s and '70s. Despite his loving parents' best efforts, John's attempts to meet their expectations failed spectacularly. Whether it was his disastrous first confession, the use of his hobby telescope to take in the bronzed Mrs. Selahowski sunbathing next door, the purloined swigs of sacramental wine, or, as he got older, the fumbled attempts to sneak contraband past his father and score with girls beneath his mother's vigilant radar, John was figuring out that the faith and fervor that came so effortlessly to his parents somehow had eluded him.

And then one day, a strong-willed young woman named Jenny walked into his life. As their love grew, John began the painful, funny, and poignant journey into adulthood -- away from his parents' orbit and into a life of his own. It would take a fateful call and the onset of illness to lead him on the final leg of his journey -- the trip home again.

The Longest Trip Home is a book for any son or daughter who has sought to forge an identity at odds with their parents', and for every parent who has struggled to understand the values of their children. It is a book about mortality and grace, spirit and faith, and the powerful love of family. With his trademark blend of humor and pathos that made Marley & Me beloved by millions, John Grogan traces the universal journey each of us must take to find our unique place in the world.

Filled with revelation and laugh-out-loud humor, The Longest Trip Home will capture your heart -- but mostly it will make you want to reach out to those you love.

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Reviews

Media Reviews

"The Longest Trip Home takes Mr. Grogan from a boyhood as Mom's "little daffodil" into the shadow of somber, adult grief. And it honors his parents, perhaps not in the way they would have chosen but in a way that suits his talents: by bringing them to life on the page. He does what he did with Marley. His loss becomes our loss too." - The New York Times, Janet Maslin.

"In this tenderly told story, Grogan considers the rift between the family he's made and the family that made him - and how to bridge the two." - Publishers Weekly.

"While Grogan's workmanlike writing, certain and readable, gives off a calculated sincerity, he is genuinely devoted to his parents." - Library Journal.

"A harmless, wholesome treat for those who don't mind a little treacle." - Kirkus Reviews.

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Rated 5 of 5 of 5 by Kathy
It Speaks To Me
It captures the heart of every parent who has done their best to raise their children with Faith, morals a real sense of a conscience & concern about people.

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Author Information

John Grogan Author Biography

Photo: Jenny Vogt

John Grogan was the Pennsylvania columnist for the Philadelphia Inquirer and the former editor in chief of Rodale’s Organic Gardening magazine. Previously he worked as a reporter, bureau chief, and columnist at newspapers in Michigan and Florida. His work has won numerous awards, including the National Press Club’s Consumer Journalism Award. He lives on a wooded hillside in Pennsylvania with his wife, Jenny, and their three children.

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Link to John Grogan's Website

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