Sunday, 4 December 2011

Angela's Ashes (Frank McCourt)

Title: Angela's Ashes
Author: Frank McCourt
Publisher: Flamingo
Publication Date:1997
Pages: 426
Source: Book club borrowed
Genre: Memoir, Auto-biography
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Angela's Ashes is the stunning memoir of Francis "Frank" McCourt. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Frank moves back to his Mother's home town of Limerick, Ireland along with his alcoholic father, and his younger brothers Malachy, Oliver and Eugene after his baby sister Margaret dies. With his father drinking away what little money they have, Angela's Ashes paints a vivid portrait of a poor Irish Catholic childhood in the slums of Limerick.

I honestly could not put this book down. McCourt manages to capture the incredible surroundings of his childhood while not succumbing to a "woe is me" style depressive read. Recently many of you celebrated Thanksgiving and although we don't celebrate this holiday here I have to say if there was ever a book to read to make you thankful for the things you have in your own life this is it.

I think one of the lasting effects of this book will be the depiction of his father's alcoholism and the devastating impact it has for the entire family. It is an incredibly honest portrayal of a family trying to survive however they can.

It is easy to see why this book won the Pulitzer Prize in 1997 and I know that many of you have already read it and hopefully fallen in love with it like I have. There is a follow up novel called 'Tis and a third called Teacher Man but I have heard very little about these or whether they live up to the first. I almost think this story would have more impact as a standalone book so I'm not sure if I will source out the others.

Read It

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