Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
+ $3.99 shipping
A Confederacy of Dunces Paperback – 1987
|New from||Used from|
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"A green hunting cap squeezed the top of the fleshy balloon of a head. The green earflaps, full of large ears and uncut hair and the fine bristles that grew in the ears themselves, stuck out on either side like turn signals indicating two directions at once. Full, pursed lips protruded beneath the bushy black moustache and, at their corners, sank into little folds filled with disapproval and potato chip crumbs."
Meet Ignatius J. Reilly, the hero of John Kennedy Toole's tragicomic tale, A Confederacy of Dunces. This 30-year-old medievalist lives at home with his mother in New Orleans, pens his magnum opus on Big Chief writing pads he keeps hidden under his bed, and relays to anyone who will listen the traumatic experience he once had on a Greyhound Scenicruiser bound for Baton Rouge. ("Speeding along in that bus was like hurtling into the abyss.") But Ignatius's quiet life of tyrannizing his mother and writing his endless comparative history screeches to a halt when he is almost arrested by the overeager Patrolman Mancuso--who mistakes him for a vagrant--and then involved in a car accident with his tipsy mother behind the wheel. One thing leads to another, and before he knows it, Ignatius is out pounding the pavement in search of a job.
Over the next several hundred pages, our hero stumbles from one adventure to the next. His stint as a hotdog vendor is less than successful, and he soon turns his employers at the Levy Pants Company on their heads. Ignatius's path through the working world is populated by marvelous secondary characters: the stripper Darlene and her talented cockatoo; the septuagenarian secretary Miss Trixie, whose desperate attempts to retire are constantly, comically thwarted; gay blade Dorian Greene; sinister Miss Lee, proprietor of the Night of Joy nightclub; and Myrna Minkoff, the girl Ignatius loves to hate. The many subplots that weave through A Confederacy of Dunces are as complicated as anything you'll find in a Dickens novel, and just as beautifully tied together in the end. But it is Ignatius--selfish, domineering, and deluded, tragic and comic and larger than life--who carries the story. He is a modern-day Quixote beset by giants of the modern age. His fragility cracks the shell of comic bluster, revealing a deep streak of melancholy beneath the antic humor. John Kennedy Toole committed suicide in 1969 and never saw the publication of his novel. Ignatius Reilly is what he left behind, a fitting memorial to a talented and tormented life. --Alix Wilber
From Library Journal
The Pulitzer Prize-winning novel with the sad history turns 20 (LJ 4/15/80). This story about a young man's isolation still rings true at a time when millions interact more with computers than with other people. This anniversary edition contains a new introduction by Andrei Codrescu.
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
Top customer reviews
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
I re-read aCoD every three to five years for a "humility tune up." The book is a highly polished soul mirror that's a lot more true-to-life than most people want it to be. Ignatius, or "His Royal Malignancy" as I like to call him, is the central character, and an extreme example of an arrogant bastard with absolutely nothing to be arrogant about, but the whole book is like a case study for John Calvin's doctrine of total depravity; everyone in it is---to some degree--indelibly screwed up. I suspect this is why so many people hate this book. At some point they see themselves here and realize that the depth of their own depravity is invariably greater than they suspected, realized, or certainly would ever have cared to admit.
If you love Ignatius J. Reilly, there is probably something really wrong with you, but if you hate him---there definitely is. Either way, you're doomed.
The title fits the characters perfectly. Everyone of them. It was hilarious, entertaining, and kept me reading until I was finished. I'm glad I saw that story on the author's life, or else I would have never known about this book. This book is a must read for anyone, whether you live in New Orleans, or know a group of dunces and can relate. My one wish is that the author could have had this published and gotten the recognition he deserved before he took his life. Maybe it would have prevented his suicide and we could still be reading his works today.
"Dunces" is one of the most realistic depictions of N'awlins since "Streetcar Named Desire." The rich dialogue is in a variety of New Orleans dialects, such as the "Yat" dialect and Negro non-standard English. The novel centers around one Ignatius J. Reilly. Though educated (through 10 years of college), Reilly is a pathetically fat (who suffers with a faulty pyloric valve), lazy, and mean-spirited person who still lives with Mom and exist on the edge of poverty. He fancies himself as a political philosopher, but is more obnoxious buffoon. He's part Thomas Aquinas and part Curly Howard. Each and every interaction with society involving Ignatious results in fiasco -- albeit with comical consequences. Take his hilarious escapades as a hot dog vendor in the French Quarter (a sign on his cart reads "12 inches of Paradise"). The supporting cast adds to the novel's rich characterization.
The book is kind of "Seinfeldesque." It's about ordinary people doing what amounts to nothing; but we find hilarity in this minutae.
"A Confederacy of Dunces" is an intriguing read that rewards the reader with a rich, mirthful tapestry of the New Orleans of the 1960s. As Ignatious might add, "It's a Pulitzer Prize winner, you Mongoloid."
You know those guys you argue with on the internet? The kind of guy that's so obstinate and angry that you wonder how they function in the real world? John Kennedy Toole basically shows you how poorly that kind of guy gets by in the real world.
The book itself is very entertaining, the characters are all-too-recognizable. You might feel a little guilty chuckling at losers... and if you don't see what the problem is, get help!
Most recent customer reviews
years and it’s my favorite novel. Just finished the audiobook and really enjoyed the different accents and inflections and...Read more