The inaugural conference of the John Updike Society recently took place
at Alvernia University in Reading, where scholars and enthusiasts
examined the author's relationship with his hometown, reports the Wall
A remaining wall from the poorhouse that was the inspiration for the setting of Updike's first novel, "The Poorhouse Fair," can be found in Shillington, a tidy Reading suburb where Updike spent his early childhood. The sturdy 1812 Plowville farmhouse where he lived from ages 10 to 18 inspired "The Centaur" and "Of the Farm"; his second cousins now live there. The Plowville church features a prominent "Tothero" grave, a common area name borrowed for coach Marty Tothero of "Rabbit, Run." Original source: Wall Street JournalRead the full story here.