The Road Through the Wall

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The Road Through the Wall is a 1948 novel by author Shirley Jackson. It draws upon Jackson's own experiences growing up in Burlingame, California.[1] Reviewing Jackson's first novel in the Montreal Gazette, Wilbur Atchison wrote: "Miss Jackson is no Sinclair Lewis; she is only 28. But she does in her most recent work show a remarkable talent for putting on paper the everyday happenings which at times make life a pleasure and sometimes make it pretty grim."[2]

Plot summary[edit]

The novel relates life on Pepper Street, a suburban, middle class neighborhood in Cabrillo, California. It takes place in 1936. The residents consider themselves upstanding citizens, although they are highly parochial in their worldview; for example, they refuse to socialize with the neighborhood's one Jewish family or with a working mother of a disabled child who rents a home on the street. The novel describes the way in which a hole being torn through the wall that has long cut off the end of the street disrupts life in the community.


  1. ^ The Road Through the Wall by Shirley Jackson, Book Review, Popular Library, 1976
  2. ^ Montreal Gazette, May 22, 1948