Pat very much enjoyed hearing from his readers and was often moved and inspired by your comments.
As you know, Pat Conroy died on March 4, 2016. This site continues to be managed by his longtime friends and literary agents. You may join in a community of his readers by sharing your comments about Pat’s books or anything else that comes to mind in this guest book. We, the family, the agents and the friends are deeply moved by the outpouring of love you, his beloved readers, wrote here… Much gratitude to you all; Thank you.
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I have turned to them during times of joy, loneliness and grief. Particularly during these current times when the world has gone crazy, time has stood still and the very fabric of our life is being torn.
May his stories live on, the South rise again and our Country return to the greatness that our founding fathers imagined.
May God bless the USA and long live the legacy of Pat Conroy!
My role at the time led me to be tasked with some of the particulars of how to honor Gene in the most memorable way possible. Since we were quite familiar with Gene's friendship with Pat, his former student, and the way that Pat always managed to slip in beautiful tributes to Gene (as well as the larger population of dedicated English teachers) in his interviews and conversations, we knew that our celebration had to include Pat Conroy.
Some time during Pat's publicity tour for My Losing Season he was scheduled for a signing at the Open Book (now unfortunately open no longer) in Greenville, SC. We made arrangements with the owner for me to meet Pat before he greeted the general public. That moment is a cherished memory I will never forget.
When I told Pat that our state English teacher association was planning to recognize Gene with its highest award, he looked at me and without missing a beat said, "Son, if you're doing anything to honor Gene Norris, you just tell me when and where, and I'll be there."
Of course, he was true to his word. I can promise anyone who reads this that there are quite a few English teachers around the state of South Carolina who remember seeing Pat's tribute to Gene that year as one of the most beautiful moments in the history of our conference. Sadly, Gene passed away several months later, but one of his family members told me at his funeral how precious that moment was for Gene as well.
I just wanted to publicly thank Pat for what he meant to those of us who teach English. In addition to his wonderful books, we are so fortunate to still have his beautiful words of support for our profession with us.
He was scheduled to do an interview with me, which I arranged to happen on the court at The World's Most Famous Arena. Unfortunately, Pat took ill and was unable to keep our appointment. I was so disappointed. I got married two years ago, and recently re-watched Conrack for the umpteenth time, introducing it to my wife, Shari.
Of course, I told her all about Pat's impact on me, and that time I came so close to meeting him.
Now I have to read more of his books.
I attended leadership school there and applied for college to be in the corps of cadets now while I was rejected due to not having a second language I remained and still remain a supporter of the college because both Pat Conroy and the Citadel taught me a lot about growing up and being both my self and "a man". I'm thankful that I discovered Conroy and his books and stories.
Now... I'm 55, teach senior English at Danville Community High School and encourage my students to read Conroy every semester.
My wife and I plan on retiring to the Beaufort area eventually, where I plan to do some writing myself.
He was/is an inspiration to so many!! RIP
It took me a little while to appreciate the language and engage with the plot, but now I’m in and hooked and know that this won’t be my last Conroy. Thanks for the website, it’s a great way to see how others having enjoyed what I’m now enjoying. The Great Santini is next.
Thank you for patconroy.com in 2021.
I remember reading the Lords of Discipline as a teenager on a road trip during a hot summer in the back of a van. I sobbed for several days while reading that book. Beach Music is the best book I have ever read. I go back and read it every few years and I wish the story never ended. I am now reading it for probably the 7th or 8th time. I will always return to this book and am so happy to have it in first edition hardcover. My best to the Conroy family in this new year.
I love to read. I love books. It is a love passed down to me from my mother, who would have 3-4 books “going” at any point of her life. It was through her that I discovered Pat Conroy. She had a system for handing down bags of read books to me... one check on the title page meant that she’d read it, but that I should only resort to reading if there were no books left in the bag. Two checks meant worth the time and three meant read first! When she gave me the book, “Beach Music”, it not only had the valued three checks, but she wrote-“Really good” followed with three exclamation points!!!
I saved the book to read on a long plane trip to Colorado with my husband. I, like my mother, am a very fast reader. If going on a 10 day vacation, I will bring 3 books. But this book was different...Pat Conroy created something that made that book last for the entire vacation. I found, that instead of flying through a book, I would read then reread and, as with the first pages of the prologue, read a third time, think about what I’d just read and then interrupt my husband’s book to read it to him. When I finally did finish the book, as is the experience with a truly good book, I was sorry I’d finished it. So was my husband who had essentially listened to a near entire reading of the book through me.
Without belaboring more than I already have, Pat Conroy changed the way I read when I read any of his works. They are prose and fiction, but so much more. He writes in poetry and tells a story in such detail that whether funny or tragic pulls you in and makes you experience the written situation as a silent but present observer.
I wish I’d been able to tell him that I read him differently than I did other author’s works. I wish there were more of his books. So, I’ve bought “Beach Music” again. I’ve only read three sections to my husband so far. I’ve just finished the prologue.
Beach Music was bittersweet and I'm almost positive I'll feel the same about this one. Thank you Mr. Conroy for your wonderful books!