Reviews provided by Syndetics
Library Journal Review
McCourt is the eldest of eight children born to Angela Sheehan and Malachy McCourt in the 1920s. The McCourts began their family in poverty in Brooklyn, yet when Angela slipped into depression after the death of her only daughter (four of eight children survived), the family reversed the tide of emigration and returned to Ireland, living on public assistance in Limerick. McCourt's story is laced with the pain of extreme poverty, aggravated by an alcoholic father who abandoned the family during World War II. Given the burdens of grief and starvation, it's a tribute to his skill that he can serve the reader a tale of love, some sadness, but at least as much laughter as the McCourts' "Yankee" children knew growing up in the streets of Limerick. His story, almost impossible to put down, may well become a classic. A wonderful book; strongly recommended for readers of any age. [Previewed in Prebub Alert, LJ 5/1/96.]Robert Moore, DuPont Merck Pharmaceuticals, Framingham, Mass. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
School Library Journal Review
YADespite impoverishing his family because of his alcoholism, McCourt's father passed on to his son a gift for superb storytelling. He told him about the great Irish heroes, the old days in Ireland, the people in their Limerick neighborhood, and the world beyond their shores. McCourt writes in the voice of the childwith no self-pity or review of eventsand just retells the tales. He recounts his desperately poor early years, living on public assistance and losing three siblings, but manages to make the book funny and uplifting. Stories of trying on his parents' false teeth and his adventures as a post-office delivery boy will have readers laughing out loud. Young people will recognize the truth in these compelling tales; the emotions expressed; the descriptions of teachers, relatives, neighbors; and the casual cruelty adults show toward children. Readers will enjoy the humor and the music in the language. A vivid, wonderfully readable memoir.Patricia Noonan, Prince William Public Library, VA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Author notes provided by Syndetics
Frank McCourt was born in Brooklyn, New York on August 13, 1930 to Irish immigrant parents. When he was four, his family moved back to Ireland. His father abandoned the family to a life of poverty. He attended school until the age of 14, at which point he was forced to drop out to help support the family. In 1949, he returned to the United States, where he worked odd jobs until being drafted into the U. S. Army during the Korean War. <p> Using the GI Bill, he received a degree in English and education from New York University. He worked at several high schools throughout New York City including McKee Vocational and Technical High School, Seward Park High School, and Stuyvesant High School. During this time, he would occasionally write articles for newspapers and magazines. He retired from teaching in 1994. <p> His first memoir, Angela's Ashes, was published in 1996. It won the National Book Critics Circle award in 1996 and the Pulitzer Prize in 1997. His other memoirs included 'Tis and Teacherman. He died on July 19, 2009 at the age of 78. <p> (Bowker Author Biography)