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The Glory of Living [Paperback]

Rebecca Gilman

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Book Description

18 Feb 2002
A play about the darker side of the American experience. Fifteen-year-old Lisa swaps an Alabama trailer-trash existence with her prostitute mother for marriage to an abusive psychopath. We meet her at 18, for the last time, after she has been convicted of multiple murders,

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Product details

  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Faber & Faber; New Ed edition (18 Feb 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0571199984
  • ISBN-13: 978-0571199983
  • Product Dimensions: 0.7 x 13.7 x 20.8 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,134,301 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

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Review

"Plays don't come much tougher, or more compassionate . . . Gilman's dramatic strength is that she provides the evidence and leaves us to form our own conclusions." --Michael Billington, "The Guardian""Powerful . . . Gilman's writing is enormously compelling." --Sarah Hemming, "Financial Times"

About the Author

Rebecca Gilman is one of the major young American playwrights working today. Her play" Spinning Into Butter" had its New York premiere at the prestigious Lincoln Center Theatre in Summer 2000 and" Boy Gets Girl"--chosen by "Time" magazine as the best play of 2000--was seen at the Manhattan Theatre Club in March 2001. Both of these plays are available from Faber and Faber. She lives in Chicago, Illinois.

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars  4 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Worth the read, but a must-SEE if possible... 25 Jan 2002
By momwith2kids - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
I've never reviewed a play based on the book alone before. But here it goes: I'm a fan of Rebecca Gilman's work anyway. I like her style...very straight and simple, the work moves quickly. I like the fact that she deals with modern issues (stalking, political correctness, child criminals), and in this case with Glory of Living, she's talking about some pretty disturbing stuff (all based on true events). However, I like the fact that she can introduce these controversial, even offensive subjects in such a way, that you can handle it. Like instead of slapping you in the face with it and turning you off completely (like in a recent play "Absolution", or Ellis' novel "American Psycho"), she shocks you but causes you to really think about the situation and the characters in that situation, how they got there, etc. I like the fact that her plays somehow force me to let go of judging the characters. I think GOL is definitely worth reading, and I do it so I can have a sense of what the story's about, but really plays were meant to be seen onstage. I saw it in NYC this past November at the MCC Theater and it really was fantastic. The cast brought a whole new dimension to the play...it's beautiful!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "But I appreciate that you try." 30 Nov 2004
By Aco - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Note: The "glory" of the title is ironic.

This is a very swift moving, lean play, which may be about ignorance, learning to pay attention to yourself, female subservience, psychopathic love or even the mental effect of poverty and absent family life on a young mind. The play is so efficient and flexible though that if I kept considering themes, several more are there. Because of that flixibility of theme, that encompasses many issues, The Glory of Living is an excellent play.

It reminded me of some of Sam Shepard's plays about poor, down and out, violent and seemingly foolish people. It also reminded me of Badlands, the 1973 film about the young, beautiful couple who murdered several people.

Another review here spoke of the simplicity with which Gilman deals with heavy subjects, allowing the audience or reader to contemplate and feel the issue out, so as to see the people involved and not be lead by spectacle and judgement. That is a point I'd say is right on, because by the end of the play I was moved by the tragedy of Lisa.

Carl: (shaking his head) I can't even begin to understand you.
Lisa: Yeah. But I appreciate that you try.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Strange but a Gilman great! 8 Jan 2003
By S. McCasland - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
You've got to have an odd taste to enjoy this thrilling Gilman play of a murdering and kidnapping couple, one older man and one young woman, who escape the prostituting mother of the main girl. Of course, I recommend her SPINNING INTO BUTTER over THE GLORY OF LIVING, as many others do. If you're a Gilman fan and used to her oddities of plots, you'll love having this on your bookshelf.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Strange but a Gilman great! 8 Jan 2003
By S. McCasland - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
You've got to have an odd taste to enjoy this thrilling Gilman play of a murdering and kidnapping couple, one older man and one young woman, who escape the prostituting mother of the main girl. Of course, I recommend her SPINNING INTO BUTTER over THE GLORY OF LIVING, as many others do. If you're a Gilman fan and used to her oddities of plots, you'll love having this on your bookshelf.
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