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Pat Conroy (1945–2016)

Author of The Prince of Tides

48+ Works 21,707 Members 612 Reviews 119 Favorited

About the Author

Pat Conroy is the pen name of Donald Patrick Conroy, who was born in Atlanta, Georgia on October 26, 1945. He received a B.A. in English from The Citadel in 1967. After teaching high school at his alma mater, he accepted a job teaching disadvantaged black children in a two-room schoolhouse on show more Daufuskie Island off the South Carolina coast. Many of the children were illiterate, unable even to write their own names. He taught them using oral history and geography lessons. His experience on Daufuskie Island formed the basis for his first successful memoir, The Water Is Wide, which won the Anisfield-Wolf Award from the Cleveland Foundation and was made into the movie Conrack starring Jon Voight in 1976. His novels include Beach Music and South of Broad. Several of his novels were adapted into movies including The Great Santini, The Lords of Discipline, and The Prince of Tides. He also wrote several works of non-fiction including The Pat Conroy Cookbook: Recipes and Stories of My Life, My Reading Life, and The Death of Santini: The Story of a Father and His Son. He died of pancreatic cancer on March 4, 2016 at the age of 70. (Bowker Author Biography) show less

Works by Pat Conroy

The Prince of Tides (1986) 5,786 copies
Beach Music (1995) 3,615 copies
South of Broad (2009) — Author — 3,039 copies
The Great Santini (1976) 1,992 copies
The Lords of Discipline (1980) 1,992 copies
The Water Is Wide (1972) 1,785 copies
My Losing Season (2002) 1,229 copies
My Reading Life (2010) 874 copies
The Boo (1981) 194 copies
The Prince of Tides [1991 film] (1991) — Screenplay — 57 copies
The WaveDancer Benefit (2002) 22 copies

Associated Works

Gone with the Wind (1936) — Foreword, some editions — 23,241 copies
Why I Write: Thoughts on the Craft of Fiction (1998) — Contributor — 187 copies
Mastering the Art of Southern Cooking (2012) — Foreword — 81 copies
Savannah Seasons (1996) — Foreword, some editions — 68 copies
Stories from the Blue Moon Café (2003) — Contributor — 67 copies
The Great Santini [1979 film] (1999) — Novel — 29 copies
The New Great American Writers' Cookbook (2003) — Contributor — 21 copies
A Portrait of Southern Writers: Photographs (2000) — Contributor — 13 copies
The Lords of Discipline [1983 film] (2004) — Original novel — 8 copies


abuse (79) American (81) American literature (77) American South (138) autobiography (109) basketball (78) biography (131) books about books (61) Charleston (140) coming of age (87) Conroy (66) contemporary fiction (77) ebook (70) education (64) family (208) fiction (1,980) first edition (87) friendship (91) Kindle (105) literature (126) memoir (419) mental illness (96) military (141) non-fiction (334) novel (240) own (89) Pat Conroy (142) read (226) signed (102) South (95) South Carolina (415) southern (214) southern fiction (157) southern literature (91) sports (59) suicide (89) teaching (58) the south (78) to-read (754) writing (97)

Common Knowledge

Legal name
Conroy, Donald Patrick
Date of death
Burial location
St. Helena Memorial Gardens, Beaufort, South Carolina, USA
Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Place of death
Beaufort, South Carolina, USA
Cause of death
pancreatic cancer
Places of residence
Atlanta, Georgia, USA
Orlando, Florida, USA
Beaufort, South Carolina, USA
Fripp Island, South Carolina, USA
The Citadel (BA|1967 ∙ English)
teacher (English ∙ psychology)
King, Cassandra (wife)
Awards and honors
Honorary Doctorate (2000)
F. Scott Fitzgerald Award for Outstanding Achievement in American Fiction (2005)
Georgia Writers Hall of Fame (2005)
Short biography
Donald Patrick "Pat" Conroy was an American author who wrote several acclaimed novels and memoirs; his books The Water is Wide, The Lords of Discipline, The Prince of Tides and The Great Santini were made into films, the latter two being Oscar nominated. He is recognized as a leading figure of late-20th century Southern literature.



Pat Conroy on his reading in Other People's Libraries (February 2017)
Pat Conroy in Legacy Libraries (February 2017)


For once, I'm recording my impression immediately after finishing a book. The reason is that basically the end of the book left me with a surprising amount of energy and desire for action. I'm sitting here questioning how much I should believe that, but it's hard not get caught up in Conroy's characters' feelings. Leo's triumph and nice, novelistic ending is not one that I necessarily think I can achieve, but it still manages to leave me feeling good. I'd say this is typical of the book as a whole, where an entire cast of characters appears and moves around in a way that - while not predictable exactly - lends itself to feeling like it's on rails, with just a hint too much deus ex. I don't feel that seriously harms the novel though for me; I take it with an understanding of suspension of disbelief and the enjoyment is conscious rather than consuming.… (more)
Zedseayou | 170 other reviews | Jan 30, 2024 |
A memoir of the author?s Marine, jet-fighter dad and growing up in a military family. His dad was loud, egotistical, hard-drinking, controlling, and crude. Yet, he loved his family very much. But when he was drunk or when he felt his orders were not being met, he was abusive, both mentally and physically. A good read.
bentstoker | 38 other reviews | Jan 26, 2024 |
Thank you, Pat Conroy. Your description of the kind of moral corruption you encountered in 1972 accurately describes the moral corruption that continues to plague much of our public school system, wastes tax dollars, and leaves many children behind. This book should be required reading for all future and current teachers, school administrators, and education agency staff. The question is, if they read it, would they care?
maryelisa | 42 other reviews | Jan 16, 2024 |
I love Pat Conroy's florid prose. I love the characters he writes and the passion with which he writes. I think this may be my favorite Pat Conroy novel.
maryelisa | 170 other reviews | Jan 16, 2024 |


1960s (1)
1980s (1)


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