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Memoir

Narrated by: John Cormack
Length: 11 hrs and 4 mins
4 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

This is the story of John McGahern's childhood - of his mother's death, his father's anger and bafflement, and of his own discovery of literature and his ambition to become a writer. At the heart of the book is an unembarrassed homage by a loving son to a woman who protected him and his sisters from his father's unpredictable moods. His joy in her presence is recovered with great lyrical tact.
©2005 John McGahern (P)2007 Oakhill Publishing Ltd

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Excellent book by Ireland's finest writer!!!

Excellent performance. The narrator really brings the characters to life. Audible please do some more McGahern!!!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Pat
  • 02-15-08

Vivid description of one rural life in Ireland

John McGahern brought back many memories of country life in Ireland to me. My childhood was during the 70s in rural Ireland and yet I could identify with much of Mr McGahern's better experiences and emotions towards the land and the people. He is a wonderful writer of warmth and empathy. Definitely worth listening to.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

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  • Caramia
  • 08-21-19

A lyrical stroll through an Irish boyhood

I spent several happy hours immersed in this book as I did my housework which, for the first time, didn't feel like a chore. Now, that it is finished I feel strangely bereft. John McGahern's writing is deliciously lyrical and employs all the senses. Being Irish myself, growing up in the 60s, I was easily able to identify with much of what he recounts. His characters are as richly painted as those of any portrait painter giving the listener as clear a picture as if they were standing before them.

However, his observances are honest, not always kind, but invariably they have the ring of truth. He speaks of his great love of Ireland, but has no hesitation in calling out the theocracy that ruled the Irish people with an iron fist, highlighting the bullying and hypocrisy perpetrated by both church and State. There is gentle humour sprinkled throughout the book, the spine of which is his relationship with his adored mother and a father who, in today's parlance, would be categorised as a classic narcissist. He was more complex than that though and MGahern has managed to convey the confusion engendered in him by living with a parent who was oft times brutal, egotistical, yet demanding of affection from all his brood.

This is not just a memoir. It is a beautifully written classic and, to my mind, should be compulsory reading for all Irish secondary school students or for anyone who loves literature.

A word in praise of John Cormack, an excellent narrator, whose mellifluous tones breathed life into all those long-dead-and-gone characters and who did justice to the beauty of McGahern's writing.