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Dubliners (Signet Classics) [Mass Market Paperback]

James Joyce , Edna O'Brien , Malachy McCourt
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (295 customer reviews)

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Book Description

February 6, 2007 0451530411 978-0451530417
Centennial Edition

Perhaps the greatest short story collection in the English language, James Joyce’s Dubliners is both a vivid and unflinching portrait of “dear dirty Dublin” at the turn of the twentieth century and a moral history of a nation and a people whose “golden age” has passed. His richly drawn characters—at once intensely Irish and utterly universal—may forever haunt the reader. In mesmerizing writing that evokes rich imagery, Joyce delves into the heart of the city of his birth, capturing the cadences of Dubliners’ speech in remarkably realistic portrayals of their inner lives. This magnificent collection of fifteen stories reveals Joyce at his most accessible and perhaps most profound.

With an Introduction by Edna O’Brien and an Afterword by Malachy McCourt
 

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Frank and Malachy McCourt and 13 Irish actors bring Joyce's short stories to life in this well-produced audiobook. None of the readers employ a thick accent in the narrative portions, but for dialogue they let their imitative talents shine and their Irish lilts bloom. Brendan Coyle and Charles Keating, reading "A Little Cloud" and "Grace" respectively, give such wonderful expression to the idiosyncrasies of every individual voice that the listener is never confused even when numerous men are talking. Joyce wrote only sparingly in actual dialect, but most of the readers interpret his intentions freely and successfully. Fionnula Flanagan is perfect reading "A Mother," her voice shifting easily between prim and proper tones and fiery indignation punctuated with little sighs. It helps that Joyce's writing is so masterful that when Flanagan and the two other actresses read the three stories that revolve around women, their words sound utterly natural. Not all the performances are on the same level—Stephen Rea's cold, somber voice is apt for the meditative beginning and ending sections of the collection's most famous story, "The Dead," but too flat for the central description of a lively party. This audiobook creates the atmosphere of a fireside storytelling session that will hold any listener in rapt attention. (May)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.

From Library Journal

Joyce's classic has been recorded before, of course, but in this new version, each of the 15 stories will be read by a different person, including writers Frank McCourt, Malachy McCourt, and Patrick McCabe, and actors Ciaran Hinds and Colm Meaney.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Series: Signet Classics
  • Mass Market Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Signet Classics (February 6, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451530411
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451530417
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 4.3 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (295 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #227,856 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
147 of 159 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This Joyce guy might amount to something December 5, 2001
Format:Mass Market Paperback
I wish I could stand up here and make some pretentious claim that this is the "greatest short story collection of all time!" or something along those lines but I generally don't read short stories or short story collections. But I like James Joyce and so figured what the heck, I made it through Ulysses, this should be a cakewalk. So I read it and if you were wowed by Ulysses then this should reconfirm Joyce's genius for you and that he could do other writing besides that wacky postmodern stuff (before there really was a postmodern). If you're not a Joyce fan most of these (other than a notable handful) probably won't convert you. In essence these are Joyce's portraits of the people of Dublin and the city itself, most of these stories are character sketches, mostly following a few people around as they go about their lives. They were written over a period of time so the quality does vary a bit, the first few stories I don't find anything special but by the time you get to around "Two Gallants" the quality takes a sharp spike upward and stays there right until the end. The prose is fairly easy to follow, the worst part is deciphering all the Irish names and slang that are used liberally for obvious reasons . . . if anything it showed me how two cultures who technically speak the language can sound so different. The stories run the gamut of the "slice of life" genre, if such a thing exists, showing people from all walks of life and all classes of society, showing them as realistically as Joyce could, all their fears and foibles, warts and all. At his best he makes you live the lives of the characters and immerses you deeply into the city of Dublin, probably more than any group of short stories has ever brought a city to life. Read more ›
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41 of 45 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Rewarding for those willing to tackle it December 26, 1999
Format:Paperback
Having grown up in a small town much like Joyce's Dublin, this book has a special significance for me. I've seen so many people from my town graduating from high school without really understanding that there is an entire world outside the place they grew up and lacking the ambition to go explore it. I fear many of them will spend their lives "getting by" in a job they hate, raising children who will inevitably do the same thing. Joyce's "Dubliners" depicts this cycle with as much complexity and compassion as any author I've read.
In an age where the most publicized fiction tends to be simple-minded and genre-bound, it's refreshing to come across a writer with Joyce's complexity. "Dubliners" is so rich in its intellectual and symbolic atmosphere that many readers may be put off by the overall weight of the prose. The writing is so thick with metaphorical contexts that the literal content of the story occasionally becomes obscured, which can be frustrating for those not used to reading Joyce. Yet, while difficult, "Dubliners" is far from impossible to decipher, and although these stories function well as a whole, they are also more or less self-contained, which makes "Dubliners" easier to get through than Joyce's other works(it's a lot easier to take on a ten page short story than a 600+ page novel like "Ulysses" or "Finnegan's Wake"). For readers who are new to Joyce, this would be a good place to start.
A final note: since this book is old enough to be considered a "classic," there are a plethora of editions available from various publishers. I own the Vintage edition (ISBN: 0679739904).
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36 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars dear dirty Dublin October 30, 2003
Format:Paperback
As a young man, James Joyce abandoned his hometown of Dublin, and yet, he never wrote about any other place. He had also rejected Catholicism, and yet all his characters are dominated by it. DUBLINERS, Joyce's collection of short stories which set the standard for the genre, is filled with characters who come to terrible revelations (which he called "epiphanies") about how their lives had been scarred by the provincialism of Dublin, the divisiveness of its politics, and the oppression of religion. By extension, this is how Joyce percieved humanity at the dawn of modernism.
The stories range from the psychologially simple ("Counterparts" and "A Little Cloud") to the extraordinarily complex ("A Painful Case" and "The Dead"). But what is common throughout is the feel for Dublin just after the turn of the last century. The readers see the cobblestones, the chimneys, the trams and carts, the churches, and the street lamps. More importantly, the readers feel the tensions underlying the public smiles and infrequent bursts of confidence that the characters exhibit.
The pinnacle of this collection is "The Dead". A novella, actually, "The Dead" encompasses everything: politics, religion, art, journalism, history, love, and the inevitability of death rendering all worldly things meaningless. This doesn't mean the story is a downer: this death is necessary to making a fresh start. The ending of "The Dead" has been interpreted in hundreds of ways. However, there is no denying that as Joyce "pulls back the camera" from the Conroy's hotel room to the universe above, the writing swells to its most beautiful. To me, this is a movement toward the future, toward change, leaving the living dead behind to a more spiritual life on Earth.
Rocco Dormarunno, author of The Five Points.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good collection of Joyce's works
Very good collection of Joyce's works. My only criticism is that it lacks a table of contents. I wanted to read "The Dubliners" first and had to go page by page tp find it
Published 1 day ago by Bruce Wolf
3.0 out of 5 stars The stories are great because people never change
The stories are great because people never change, either over time or from country to country. The language requires a lot of looking up, since I am unfamiliar with the dialect.
Published 3 days ago by DeeDee
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Excellent book and excellent service!
Published 4 days ago by Thomas R. Schulte
5.0 out of 5 stars Joyce at his best
A favorite!
Each of the stories in this artful collection is a work of art in and of itself. Highly recommended, it is a must-read for anyone who wants to take a master class... Read more
Published 6 days ago by Lisa Donne Sampson
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A classic from a fantastic writer.
Published 8 days ago by Neal103
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
A readable and handy edition.
Published 11 days ago by John Bowers
5.0 out of 5 stars James Joyce....
Bought this as a gift. Classic book by classic author.
Published 14 days ago by needsunshine
1.0 out of 5 stars The book that this company sent was a cheap knockoff ...
The book that this company sent was a cheap knockoff. It wasn't worth the paper it was printed on. Don't buy it!! We went to Barnes and Noble and got the REAL book!
Published 14 days ago by Lorrie
5.0 out of 5 stars Again this was an interesting and informative wander through the ...
Again this was an interesting and informative wander through the lives of Dubliners and there characteristics. A very enjoyable read.
Published 15 days ago by Christine Harris
2.0 out of 5 stars not for me
Not sure if it is the time frame it was written in or Joyce's writing style itself but this isn't for me. Read more
Published 20 days ago by Tom Falcon
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