What a wonderful experience, listening to the author himself telling this tale. The story is compelling and I believe it to be true. Can't wait to hear Tis.
Its a memoier and narrated by the writer himself. It is so intense, so personal so emotional. One share the extreme poverty of the family of the Mc Courts due to the drinking of the father. One cannot believe the tragedies the famely must overcome. Should not be read - should be heard told by the writer the boy whos life we follow. Marvelous.
This is an entertaining listen, made better by Frank himself who is a decent narrator. Many of the stories will resonate with his countrymen (but not if you are a Limerickman it seems), eg the sarcasm of teachers, officials, and adults, not to mention the usual clip round the ear from all of the above. My only complaint, Frank, would be that you repeat a bit too much on the drunken fathers songs & the spent pay cheque, which become pretty predictable. Still my first audiobook, and no absolutely no regrets, very enjoyable. Nice one.
I can't concur with the few reviews claiming this book was boring or pointless. I found it to be poignant and more than anything it brings out solidarity between the charecters and the reader. If you've ever been hungry or cold in your life, if you've ever lost someone you loved you will immediately strike a chord with the young boy through which this story was told. Catholics especially will find humor in the parts of the book in which the story collides with the Church. It is told through his young 7-11 year old self, and some of the observations he makes are simply hilarious. It is a sad tale, but it is humorous throughout. Maybe you have to have a certain love of the Irish, know the "Catholic guilt", or have an understanding of what it's like to be poor and unlucky through no fault of your own. I loved it and I don't think a long time will pass before I'll take a trip back to Ireland and visit Frank McCourt again.
The author is one of the best readers I have heard on an audiobook. I have heard that this book can be depressing, but I really felt like it showed over and over the kindness of strangers during difficult times. The sense of humor of the author comes through clearly in the audiobook. I burst into laughter several times.
Toward the end of the book, the story becomes rather obsessed with sex, which makes the book inappropriate for children. But it is a reflection of life during adolescence, and really shows the conflicts that arise when one's feelings interfere with religious upbringing.
I found myself laughing out loud, gasping, muttering etc. while I listened to this book. It was truly the story of a courageous young boy. To endure the sadness, the poverty and the weight of religious guilt like none I've ever known is a feat in itself. I loved this story very much and looked forward to every moment spent listening to the author tell his tale.
The author reads the book really well, his accent really adds to the story, but boy is this a depressing book. Some of it I could relate to however - customs from my childhood, too.
Being part Irish, my family and friends constantly recommended that I read the tear-jerker, Angela's Ashes. I always found an excuse not to sit down and read it. Maybe it was because I knew that I had to listen to him tell me. Frank McCourt sings the Irish pub songs his dad would sing walking drunk down the street; that did it for me. Because he read the words himself, I knew that all of it was right on and I felt like I was witness. Get ready for some sad writing written extremely well. What a guy.