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Angela's Ashes


“Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood. “Worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood.”

These lines basically sum up what’s to read in Frank McCourt’s Angela’s Ashes. The author recounts his desperately poor early years, living on public assistance and losing three siblings, wearing shoes repaired with tires, begging a pig’s head for Christmas dinner, and searching the pubs for his father who is drinking away the family’s dinner.

Without the humor, the book would have been a very difficult read for me. Just when you thought the family's situation couldn't any uglier, a new problem arises. I almost put down the book in despair after reading just about twenty pages of it. But I’m glad that I didn’t.


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