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The Wig My Father Wore Paperback – October 7, 2001


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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Funny, poignant, and surreal, Irish writer Enright's first novel, though the second to be published in the U.S. after What Are You Like? [BKL Ag 00], tells the story of an angel's visitation to Grace, an unconventional young Dublin woman. Stephan, the angel, was an ordinary man who committed suicide and is now growing his wings by "setting despair to rights." Grace works for a television program called The Love Quiz, which is as tawdry as one might imagine, with a crew as lovingly close and destructive as any dysfunctional family, and her actual family is just as ordinary and bizarre. Curiously, Grace's father, who suffers from Alzheimer's, speaks with the most wisdom, and his wig is treated like a member of the family. Enright explores love, faith, and familial relationships in a way never before seen, combining chaos with insights that ring true in a novel that won't engage everyone but that will reward those bold enough to stick with it. Danise Hoover
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

Review

[C]lever, unsettling and thoroughly modern -- Tom Gilling New York Times --This text refers to the Digital edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 214 pages
  • Publisher: Grove Press (October 7, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802138322
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802138323
  • Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 5.5 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 9.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #182,511 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

6 of 9 people found the following review helpful By shoutgrace on February 27, 2002
Format: Paperback
I found this book very surreal and often times strange. It starts out with Stephen the angel showing up on Grace's doorstep. At times I'd get lost going back and forth from Grace's home life and her trying to accustom to Stephen's presence. Throwing herself into her job in TV broadcasting at a weekly program called the LoveQuiz. Her father is going senile with Alzheimer's. Looking at Grace, she's pretty much has a good solid life.

Through most of her cynical views. She realizes she must take hold of her life and all of it's absurd turns. With Stephen's appearance he explains to Grace he (a former bridge builder who committed suicide) came back to earth to guide lost souls. Soon they both establish a household together. Visits to her parents house and the memories and pictures that are hidden from view. Reminds Grace that her father who she always knew wore a wig. From the time of her parents meeting and the later stuff. All the family reminscences. The time they first got an Aerial. The first time they got a TV. The first night viewing in 1969 with a memorable list of Irish TV programs. Do these bring back memories? Such as, Steady As She Go-Goes (on the night they landed on the moon), Apollo 11, The Riordians on Wednesday night.

The ending is subtle and fluid like the milk she trails on the road to her house. Describes it like making love or dying. Nothing really dies. To a woman it make's sense. Just as the sky is blue. Just imagine that unpredictable revelation like falling in love. Through the complex picture of family, religion, sex, love and redemption is a glowing wit and a vibrant flavor like the blue pattern of a TV screen. This book has everything from parents and love to religion and the weird oddities of life. The author probes every angle with precision. And with a penchant for a zoom lens to focus on the fluid and clever situations. I think it was quite an entertaining and a fun read.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 29, 2002
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The set-up for the plot was excellent and I loved the ending of the book but the middle was a muddle. Still, the author has a very interesting way of looking at the world and capturing it in words.
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By S. FLORES-SURPRISE on June 22, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book was awful! I did not find any humor in it. I found the writing style to be rather elementary. I use to write short stories in a similar style when I was nineteen and had jumped on the whole mock-drepression, no-real-reason-to-be-negative, wanna-be-anti-social grunge bandwagon. I just could not get into her "jaded character" writing style, having outgrown it myself. I didn't see the point of the story (if there was one). I couldn't make connections (if there were any to be made). It was very free-flow, almost stream of consciousness and not interesting in the least. I am sorry I bought it and stopped reading it halfway through when I finally realized that it would not get better. The only reason why I gave it one star is because I was forced to, I was required to give it a rating in order to be able to post my review.
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2 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Anne M on February 15, 2009
Format: Paperback
This novel makes no sense. Half of it is gibberish. The other half is just not worth reading. Waste of time.
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