Reviewer's often refer to this as a classic about a single day in the life of Leopold Bloom and his wife, Molly in and around Dublin. How boring does that sound, and what injustice does it do to this brilliantly subversive novel? It could not understate anything more.
Joyce is a master of pastiche and co-opts multiple styles in this at times wickedly funny and often profound and unsettling masterpiece. This was a bucket list read for me. I thought it would be a chore, but it was amazingly funny. At times, Nietzsche and Freud meet the Marx brothers. At others, the puffed up style of academia catalogs a dissected life. In places it is vulgar and bawdy; while in others poetically beautiful. It mirrors us: complex and complicated, dirty and selfish, neurotic and needy, striving for understanding and acceptance while trapped by prejudice and the prevailing mores of the 19th century and driven to define the meaning of being alive.
The performance of the readers was extraordinary. Jim Norton's mastery of all the nuances, rhythms and emotions of the characters in all types of situations was nothing less than brilliant.
The last few chapters about the lady wonderful!
The lady at the end.
He is perfect in his readings.
The internal monologue was masterful.
It's one long scene, how can you tell.
Did he get paid by the word?
Not sure. Jim Norton was great but I just couldn't get through this.
I really tried with this book - twice. I found it tedious to listen to as there is really no "plot" just rambling thoughts and everyday actions. I'm sure it was all leading somewhere but I have no idea where and worse ... I didn't care. I've listened to several hundred books - Ive been an audible member for a long time and this was the first book I didn't finish. Maybe I'll try again another time and the third time will be a charm. I gave it three stars because I know it's a classic and seemed unfair to rate lower without finishing.
Amazing grasp of the English language. Definitely not an easy work to read, but worth it.
The one essential book of the twentieth century read by one of the best Irish stage actors.
The Bible because Joyce's Ulysses sets a standard for prose and poetry in the 20th and 21st century and in Bloom, an Irish Jew, it is the story of every man. No book is so thick with concrete sensuous prose, no book is so rich in diverse writing styles.
Buck Mulligan because every college English major has had the pleasure of a Buck Mulligan type on tap with a fine head of booze.
A day like no other so filled with the sensuous delight of intimate immediacy.
A heartfelt humorous exposure of humankind.
The narrator does an amazing job of bringing to life a work of mad genius. However I did not care for the "book" as a whole. It was broken, fragmented, and in general an exercise in what can be, not what should be. The first story arc as well as the last chapter were the redeeming qualities of this work of fiction, that was otherwise nearly intolerable.
This book is often listed among the greatest novels. It is certainly among the most admired, but perhaps not among the most beloved. It's stream-of-conscious format and rambling plot make for very difficult reading. Fortunately, the audio format removes some of that confusion.
It is still a many-hour and hard listen but the narration is brilliantly done and helps immeasurably to get the dedicated listener through it. Unless one is a literature major or true intellectual, most will find this a real task. But if you love language and are willing to be projected back to an earlier time with harsh references to ethnic groups, this can be quite rewarding.
Don M, of Queen Creek, AZ