October Meetup: Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt

Bianca hosted our meetup for Angela’s Ashes on Sunday – so a big THANK YOU to her for opening her home for the second time.  Also, lots of ladies brought food items which is always appreciated.  For those who couldn’t attend, Kelly made pumpkin cheesecake – be jealous!

The meeting actually started out with a brief discussion of The Mistress’s Revenge.  That book has garnered more conversation than pretty much any other book we’ve read and only a handful of members have read it!  Totally the novel equivalent of a train wreck.  I’m looking to host a mini-meetup/dinner outing to discuss the novel again in January.  You have plenty of time to get a copy and join us!  At next month’s Hedgehog meetup, I’ll let someone borrow my copy!

When I look back on my childhood, I wonder how I managed to survive at all. It was, of course, a miserable childhood; the happy childhood is hardly worth your while. Worse than the ordinary miserable childhood is the miserable Irish childhood, and worse yet is the miserable Irish Catholic childhood.

We only spent a brief time on Angela’s Ashes as our conversation had a mind of its own.  Everyone loved the novel – many have read Frank McCourt’s other books.  We discussed how this novel is simultaneously desperately gritty and poignantly humorous.  McCourt’s genius lies in his ability to know just when to turn a light-hearted phrase to draw the reader out of tragic circumstances into a place of hope.  Everyone agreed that Frank’s youthful voice was charming, resilient, and honest.  I wonder how the story would have changed if not told through the eyes of a growing child?

For those who have never read the novel, it’s well worth your time.  Not a story to read quickly – make sure you give yourself the ability to slowly soak in the atmosphere, the language, and the brutal reality of abject poverty.

Our conversation briefly touched on another wonderful non-fiction novel, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote which I, along with several other members, highly recommend.  Then we discussed world travel, culture, and the city of Atlanta’s identity over time.  We even got a little bit political with talk of districting, education, and race.

With so much socializing, I created a meetup for November 5th purely for socializing.  We’ll be spending a wonderful afternoon on the Front Page News patio so make sure and RSVP over at Meetup.com.  Our November meetup will be The Elegance of the Hedgehog and I look forward to seeing everyone soon!

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One thought on “October Meetup: Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt

  1. Pingback: Unterberg Poetry Center Turns 75 | American Poetry Today

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