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Mr. Blue Paperback – February 1, 2005


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Product Details

  • Series: Loyola Classics
  • Paperback: 148 pages
  • Publisher: Loyola Classics; Reissue edition (February 1, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0829421319
  • ISBN-13: 978-0829421316
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 5.2 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #70,508 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Book Description

The mysterious and magnetic J. Blue spends his inherited wealth as soon as he gets it and lives in a packing box on a New York City rooftop. This beloved novel about a contemporary St. Francis figure, first published in 1928, has intrigued countless readers for decades.
 

From the Back Cover

Blue . . . was a uniquely American personality. As Myles Connolly wrote him, J. Blue was the man whom the ambitious Jay Gatsby might have become had he steered by a higher truth than the sound of money in Daisy Buchanan’s voice.”
—from the introduction by John B. Breslin, S.J.

J. Blue is a young man who decides to take Christianity seriously, not as a chore but as a challenge. He spends his inherited wealth almost as soon as he gets it. He lives in a packing box on a New York City rooftop. He embraces the poor as his best friends and wisest companions, distrusts the promises of technology (except for the movies), and is fascinated by anything involving the wide expanse of God’s universe. He is the ultimate free spirit, it seems; but what is the source—and purpose—of his freedom? This novel about a contemporary St. Francis figure has delighted and inspired countless readers since it was first published in 1928.
 


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Customer Reviews

Mr. Blue blew my mind.
J. Stanley Schmidt
I first read this book 30 years ago; I have reread it many times since.
The Concise Critic:
If you can get your hands on this book, do so, you'll be glad you did.
M. Gallegos

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

50 of 52 people found the following review helpful By Patrick J. Atkinson on September 4, 2004
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I first read Blue when I was a young teenager, and the short novel's simplicity, purity, expression, and color all formed how I viewed the world for the rest of my teenage years. Like Christ, Blue.... who I believe manifests modern-day real-world Christianity, or perhaps even a contemporary St. Francis of Assisi imagery..... found God's colorful inspiration in the good and bad in the world that surrounded him.

Its a shame that Mr. Blue has gone out of print, and over the years I've taken pleasure in hunting down, buying and gifting copies of this wonderful book.

If only today's youth could be be inspired to love, laughter and service through a book as wonderful as Mr. Blue. If only today's adults could revel in making the wonderful dreams found in this book come alive....
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23 of 23 people found the following review helpful By M. Gallegos on August 18, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I don't know how I got a hold of this book when I was between 8 and 10 years old, but I'm glad that I did. I lost this book many years ago (20+) but have never forgotten it's message, LOVE LIFE, because it's beautiful, not in spite of the bad, but sometimes because of the bad. If you can get your hands on this book, do so, you'll be glad you did.
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23 of 24 people found the following review helpful By A. Calabrese on November 27, 2005
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mr. Blue by Myles Connolly is that rare treasure of a book and story whose description triggers a need to obtain it. This 115 page, Loyola Press edition, novella got a mention in Fr. James T. O'Connor's wonderful book on the theology of the Eucharist, The Hidden Manna. What Fr. O'Connor said about this book intrigued me and I purchased it. It is a wonderful read.

Originally published in 1928 the book was written by screen writer and producer Myles Connolly. He is most famous for his connection with the classic films It Happened One Night and State Of The Union. He was also a devout Catholic and that shows in his story telling.

The main character, J. Blue, is the anti-Gatsby. He is a Jazz Age St. Francis seeking to divest himself of all things material and a saint of the streets who seeks out poverty to glorify God. Blue, who for part of the story lives in a packing crate on the roof of a skyscraper, sees the image of God in every man, especially the poor, and is in tune with creation. Where Gatsby sought to rid himself of his past and invested his life in social climbing, Blue seeks to lessen himself so that the glory of God will increase. Of note and interest is the author's describing Eugenics and the State in its most evil incarnation and eerily predicting Nazi religious persecuation and racial law. Remember, this book was published in 1928. Myles Connolly apparently had his finger on what was going on in the world. Sadly, some of what the main character J. Blue sees in his dream has come to pass.

This is a book every Catholic should read. It would make a wonderful book for parish discussion. Finally, it would make a great full-length movie. I say full-length because even though it is a novella Blue's dream, which he thought would make a great film, would take a full production to do it justice. Buy this book and pass it along to your friends, Catholics and non-Catholics alike.
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18 of 18 people found the following review helpful By JoAnn Frick on March 23, 2002
Format: Paperback
I was given this outstanding work as a gift by one of the most precious people that has ever touched my life. She told me that whenever we were together, Jay Blue kept popping into her head so she gave me my treasured copy. I've probably read the book 100 times and continually find peace, encouragement and delight. No author has ever had such a profound effect upon my life and those I love. Whatever the price - read it!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By R. Murray on August 15, 2003
Format: Board book Verified Purchase
Mr Blue was my dads favorite book. 25 years ago, while I was away in the service, he suggested I read it. I went into a book store and ordered a copy. I have read it probably 10 times since then. I have been inspired by it and enjoyed it thoroughly each time. I see the edition of it I have selling for $$$. I wouldn't sell it for $$$$.! Like Jay Blue, dads been gone now for many years but I can still see his heart in this book.
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By J. Stanley Schmidt on December 5, 1999
Format: Paperback
This book was given to me by William Stringfellow, unquestionably the outstanding 20th century American theologian. Karl Barth called him that. Stringfellow was a laymen, a lawyer, and a prophet. His admiration for Jay Blue was exceeded only by his fidelity to Jesus Christ. Mr. Blue blew my mind. One of three best books I have read. I have no idea how my copy every left me. It's an incredible story about a sinful saint.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By GawneMarkOblSB@bresnanlink.net on April 30, 2000
Format: Board book
I first read Mr. Blue in 1963. He changed my life. Myles Connolly's tale of one man who embraces life with a rare exuberance is so refreshing. Although written in 1928, this book refuses to die as successive generations pass on the story. Mr. J. Blue takes living what it means to be Christian seriously. Both funny and full of pathos, Mr.Blue is truly a Twentieth Century American classic.
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14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Phil Schwartz on December 11, 1999
Format: Paperback
I'm not ashamed to say that this book prompted my conversion to Christianity. If you read it, you will see why.
I taught English literature for twenty years before I picked up this book in a dentist's office. I was immediately captivated. Then I was heartbroken. (Saying goodbye to Mr. Blue is not easy to do.) The next step for me? I decided to follow in his footsteps!
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