De whiskywezen Flann OBrien

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157 pages


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De whiskywezen  by  Flann OBrien

De whiskywezen by Flann OBrien
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Subtitled An Exegesis of Squalor, The Hard Life is a sober farce from a master of Irish comic fiction. Set in Dublin at the turn of the century, the novel does involve squalor—illness, alcoholism, unemployment, bodily functions, crime, illicit sex—MoreSubtitled An Exegesis of Squalor, The Hard Life is a sober farce from a master of Irish comic fiction. Set in Dublin at the turn of the century, the novel does involve squalor—illness, alcoholism, unemployment, bodily functions, crime, illicit sex—but also investigates such diverse topics as Church history, tightrope walking, and the pressing need for public toilets for ladies.

The Hard Life is straight-faced entertainment that conceals in laughter its own devious and wicked satire by one of the best known Irish writers of the 20th century.The dialogue is first rate, as is the Dublin atmosphere- and some of his characters are as rich and yeasty as good porter foaming out of the jar.

(Times Literary Supplement 12-1-61)Described as a sober farce, this book is anything but sober. Wild, hilarious, fast moving, irreverent and comic would be the better way to describe it. . . . Not since the publication of Mr. OBriens first book, At Swim-Two-Birds, has such a comic novel come out of Ireland.

(Shaun OCriadin, New York Herald Tribune 7-29-62)The conversation is a delight—it seems no Irishman can be dull when talking—and the atmosphere of a lower-middle-class family, with its cheerless, shabby, restricted way of life, is well done. (Library Journal 5-15-62)Flann OBriens The Hard Life is a comic Irish novel that derives its effect from an absolutely deadpan approach, for the narrator is a small boy who, for the better part of the time, has only the foggiest notion of what he is describing.

Young Finbarr commands a glorious version of the English language combined with a totally impartial view of adult actions. The two things produce remarkable results. (Phoebe Adams, Atlantic 7-62)The real subject and hero of the novel is the English language—or rather, the Irish version of English. Its possible that OBrien is actually better than Joyce at preserving the qualities of the Irish penchant for word play, a convention which often strikes an American audience as outrageous. . . . OBriens technique in The Hard Life is supremely economical, reading like a script without the obtrusive stage directions.

(City Pages 7-20-94)



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