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Tis A Memoir (Hardcover)

Author:  Frank McCourt
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Learn more about Tis:

Format: Hardcover
ISBN-10: 0684848783
ISBN-13: 9780684848785
Sku: 30500479
Publish Date: 9/1/1999
Dimensions:  (in Inches) 9.75H x 6.25L x 1.25T
Pages:  368
Age Range:  NA
See more in Literary
When the MS Irish Oak sailed from Cork in October 1949, we expected to be in New York City in a week. Instead, after two days at sea, we were told we were going to Montreal in Canada. I told the first officer all I had was forty dollars and would Irish Shipping pay my train fare from Montreal to New York. He said, No, the company wasn't responsible. He said freighters are the whores of the high seas, they'll do anything for anyone. You could say a freighter is like Murphy's oul' dog, he'll go part of the road with any wanderer. (from the first line)
I'd sit on that deck chair and look into my head to see myself cycling around Limerick City and out into the country delivering telegrams. I'd see myself early in the morning riding along country roads with the mist rising in the fields and cows giving me the odd moo and dogs coming at me till I drove them away with rocks. I'd hear babies in farmhouses crying for their mothers and farmers whacking cows back to the fields after the milking.
And I'd start crying to myself on that deck chair with the gorgeous Atlantic all around me, New York ahead, city of my dreams where I'd have the golden tan, the dazzling white teeth. I'd wonder what in God's name was wrong with me that I should be missing Limerick already, city of gray miseries, the place where I dreamed of escape to New York. I'd hear my mother's warning, The devil you know is better than the devil you don't know.

Other Formats: Hardcover, Hardcover- Large Print, Audio Cassette- Abridged, Audio Cassette- Unabridged, Audio CD- Unabridged

Frank McCourt's glorious childhood memoir, Angela's Ashes, has been loved and celebrated by readers everywhere. It won the National Book Critics Circle Award and the Pulitzer Prize. Rarely has a book so swiftly found its place on the literary landscape. And now we have 'Tis, the story of Frank's American journey from impoverished immigrant to brilliant teacher and raconteur. Frank lands in New York at age nineteen, in the company of a priest he meets on the boat. He gets a job at the Biltmore Hotel, where he immediately encounters the vivid hierarchies of this "classless country," and then is drafted into the army and is sent to Germany to train dogs and type reports. It is Frank's incomparable voice, his uncanny humor and his astonishing ear for dialogue that renders these experiences spellbinding.
From the Publisher:
Sorry: Due to printer error, this annotation ran with the wrong cover in the September issue. We regret any inconvenience this may have caused. The sequel to the Pulitzer Prize-winning "Angela's Ashes, " McCourt's glowing memoir chronicles his story from impoverished immigrant to brilliant raconteur and schoolteacher--a tale of survival as vivid, harrowing, and often hilarious as its bestselling predecessor.
Frank McCourt continues the story of his impoverished life which he began in ANGELA'S ASHES, using his characteristic charm and self-deprecating humor to describe his military service in Europe and his return to New York, where he struggled to gain an education and eventually became a teacher. While most of the book sparkles with his Irish wit, the story darkens a bit when McCourt reveals that he eventually felt compelled to leave his wife and family, seemingly duplicating his own father's betrayal, which was the primary cause of the relentless poverty which haunts McCourt's memoirs. ?TIS was named a New York Times Notable Book in 1999.
Author Bio
Frank McCourt
Frank McCourt was born in Brooklyn, New York to Irish immigrants. When he was six, his family returned to Ireland, and he spent the remainder of his childhood in Limerick. McCourt came back to New York at the age of 19, and aside from a stint in the U.S. Army, he has lived in one of the five boroughs ever since. McCourt held a wide variety of jobs as a young man, including longshoreman and a stint feeding the birds in the lobby of the Biltmore Hotel (he was demoted when the birds started dying). He worked his way through New York University and became a high school English teacher in the late 1950s. After several years at McKee Vocational High School in Staten Island, McCourt transferred to Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan, where he specialized in teaching creative writing. He was much beloved by his students for his skill as a raconteur as well as his teaching. Since retiring in 1987, McCourt has performed in a revue of words and music, entitled "A Couple of Blackguards," which he wrote and starred in with his brother, the actor Malachy McCourt. In 1996, ANGELA'S ASHES, McCourt's memoir of his tough childhood in Limerick, became an international bestseller and garnered several awards, including the Pulitzer Prize for autobiography. He followed that with two more enormously popular memoirs, ?TIS and TEACHER MAN, and earned countless more fans through speaking engagements, where he routinely regaled audiences with further tales of his impoverished youth in Ireland and New York. McCourt died from melanoma in 2009 at the age of 78.


New York Times
"'TIS is a considerably angrier book than ANGELA'S ASHES....largely animated by the feelings of resentment and envy that the young McCourt experienced in trying to overcome his family's legacy of poverty and deprivation....[The] descriptions are enlivened by McCourt's resilient sense of humor, they do not possess the lyricism or searing intimacy that fueled his childhood reminiscences in ANGELA'S ASHES." - Michiko Kakutani 09/14/1999

Entertainment Weekly
[T]his book has the same clairvoyant eye for quirks of class, character, and fate [as ANGELA'S ASHES], and also a distinct picaresque quality. It's a quest for an America of wholesome Hollywood happiness that doesn't exist, and it's about the real America--rendered with comic affection--that McCourt discovers along the way." - L.S Klepp 09/24/1999

Los Angeles Times Book Review
"McCourt seems less in control in this book and at times is powerless to keep himself from becoming the stage Irishman, crying in his beer, milking sentiment until it becomes false, mistaking talk for thought....If 'TIS sometimes becomes tedious when telling how McCourt became a stranger in a strange land, it is profound when dealing with his unappeasable past....'TIS has all those elements that made ANGELA'S ASHES such a success--the narrative brio, the fierce sympathy for human tic and torment, the intuitive feel for character and above all the love of language and that very Irish understanding that words are our only weapon in our long quarrel with God." - Peter Collier 09/19/1999

New York Times Book Review
"This is a refreshing Frank McCourt--learned, ever so thoughtful. He is almost given to 'emotion recollected in tranquillity.' In writing of the dissolution of his first marriage and the deaths of his parents, he does not strive for Dickensian poignancy. Here's the fellow who can prove himself in ink and need not romanticize the writer or presume there was no place of honor for the teacher. 'TIS a success story, after all." - Maureen Howard 09/19/1999

San Francisco Chronicle Book Review
"'TIS is a more ambitious book than ANGELA'S ASHES and a more complicated one....McCourt's prose is still distinguished by his perfect pitch. His dialogue is second to none, precise, evocative....Powerful and haunting, this second book will cement his reputation as an accomplished and important writer." - Caitlin Flanagan 09/26/1999

Product Attributes

Product attributeBook Format:   Hardcover
Product attributeNumber of Pages:   0368
Product attributePublisher:   Scribner Book Company
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