patUnderstanding Pat Conroy by Catherine Seltzer; 2015; $21.95; 137 pages; University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC; 978-1-61117-546-2; purchased from Amazon.com; 5/7/15-5/8/15

Why did I read this?  Because ever since I read Great Santini (many times) I have been a fan of Pat Conroy.  I have read and reread most of his books and after reading this I am going to re-read them again.

What is the story?  This is a critical look at Conroy’s work and the themes that run through them.  There is a short biography of Pat Conroy and then each following chapter is about one of his books.  Each chapter looks at the influences that show in the book, the back drop against which it was written and how certain themes are expressed in each book and every book.  The Death of Santini, which I believe came out just before this was published is briefly mentioned.  The Boo, The Pat Conroy Cookbook and My Reading Life are not closely examined but are mentioned.  It was an interesting look behind the curtain at my favorite author.  Sometimes this kind of book destroys my desire to reread books but this has whetted my desire to read Conroy’s books.

Grade A

Did I enjoy it?  Yes, some of it I had already determined from reading the books multiple times but other things were a-ha moments that made me want to reread the books.

What is with the title of the review?  Pat Conroy grew up the son of a Marine Officer moving many times.  I grew up the son of a Naval Officer moving many times.  There are certain themes in his works that resonate strongly with me.