“Our Prince of Scribes: Writers Remember Pat Conroy” edited by Nicole Seitz and Jonathan Haupt

Edited by Nicole Seitz and Jonathan Haupt
University of Georgia Press (2019)
ISBN 9780820356853
Reviewed by Christine Watson for Reader Views (11/19)

“Our Prince of Scribes,” is a compilation of stories about the incredible writer, Pat Conroy written by his fellow writers and friends. The stories span the life of Pat Conroy, revealing a unique insight into his life that feels like a privilege to learn. It seems like you get to know the real Pat Conroy through these beautifully written stories.

Pat Conroy was a southern boy through and through. The first few stories share fun details of his youth. He was a strong athlete with a large frame who excelled in sports. He was part of a military family, so he moved often and attend the last two years of high school in Beaufort. He grew up in an abusive family, and later wrote The Great Santini, which was a similar story to his own growing up. He played basketball in college at The Citadel and pushed the boundaries when he wrote and spread a story about hazing that was supposed to be kept quiet.

While his childhood was a bit rough due to his father’s abuse, he was later able to develop a strong bond with his dad. He also became a promoter of The Great Santini, even though the story didn’t put him in a good light.

The common thread that is prevalent throughout the book among all the stories is Pat’s genuine connection to his family and friends. Each writer has a memory that talks about Pat reaching out to them personally, or taking their call, or whatever it was to stay connected through the years. Even though he was famous author with was very busy, he knew what was important and has his priorities in line.

I could go on and on with details of the stories, but overall, I thoroughly enjoyed reading about Pat Conroy through the eyes and experiences of those who knew and loved him best. I highly recommend this book to anyone who was a fan of Pat, but also anyone who wants to know more about him and the great life he lived. “Our Prince of Scribes” is a beautiful way to remember a beloved author and I am grateful for the opportunity to read this book!

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