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Ironweed [Abridged, Box set]

William P. Kennedy Audio CD
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)

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Product details

  • Audio CD (4 Feb 2003)
  • Abridged edition
  • Number of Discs: 3
  • Format: Abridged, Box set
  • Label: Media Books Audio Publishing
  • ASIN: 1578155134
  • Other Editions: Hardcover  |  Paperback  |  Audio Download  |  Mass Market Paperback  |  Library Binding  |  School & Library Binding  |  Audio Cassette  |  Leather Bound  |  Turtleback  |  Unbound  |  Unknown Binding
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 926,890 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Awesome display of eclecticism 17 May 2000
Ironweeed is perhaps the most famous, although arguably not the greatest, of the Albany Cycle. I can do no better than to recommend this wholeheartedly to anyone interested in reading some of the finest American literature of this century. If at all possible read the Albany Cycle as a set + in the correct order (this is the third I think!). The books make a lot more sense when viewed as a whole rather than as individual works (a mistake that several people seem to have made who contributed to these reviews! ). Read them ALL as soon as you possibly can!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars My favorite book of all-time 31 Mar 1999
By A Customer
Ironweed introduced to me the glorious possibility and power of the novel. Francis Phelan's story is not simply that of an Albany bum, but the story of anyone who has ever felt guilt or pain about the past. Kennedy uses the English language like a concert pianist at Carnegie Hall. The book is thought-provoking and complex.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An American classic; finest in its generation. 23 Jan 1997
By A Customer
Kennedy's writing of family, the magical, and the terribly real have made him the finest American writer of his generation. Unfairly labeled a Regional writer; his writing is universal, timeless.
Kennedy is the most well-rounded writer of literature to be writing since the days Hemingway and Fitzgerald roamed the globe.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional 20 Jun 2012
Format:Kindle Edition
This is a wonderful and almost heartbreaking tale that weaves through the protagonists blurry atonement against the backdrop of a haunted Albany and a haunted life. One of the best books ive had the fortune to read. a must buy.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Good Book! 5 Feb 1999
By A Customer
Kennedy chooses an interesting topic of a hard-luck guy coping with his past. An honest look at surviving with today's problems and yesterday's skeletons. Not the quickest of stories, but not as slow as Joyce!
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By A Customer
When I bought Ironweed, it was for the mere purpose of contemplating just what it was about the novel that won it the Pulitzer prize. I picked it up late on a Saturday night I read it from cover to cover once I returned home. The language in the novel brilliant and the style is very unique. The characters are also ones that will not perish from the mind like many others that have been created in past [cherished] novels; and make sure you do not touch the movie!
Read the book and never watch the movie!
Thanks HT
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "My guilt is all I have left. If I lose it..." 2 Jan 2006
Format:Mass Market Paperback
With Ironweed, William Kennedy completes his three novels of Depression-era Albany, wrapping up this study of time, place, and people with an emotionally gripping Pulitzer Prize-winner (1984) that focuses on those who call themselves "bums," all of them living apart from society because their dreams have died. Francis Phelan, long-absent father of Billy Phelan, the main character in the previous novel, Billy Phelan's Greatest Game, returns to Albany for the first time in twenty-two years. In the previous novel, which concludes a week before Ironweed begins, Francis reconnects with his son Billy, who, stunned by Francis's reappearance, gets him get out of jail, gives him money, and begs him to visit his mother and the family.
Francis, a former pro ballplayer, lost his career when he lost part of a finger in a fight. He abandoned his wife Annie and his family when he accidentally dropped and killed his 13-day-old son Gerald, an act for which he still atones. Francis, however, now discovers from Billy that Annie has never revealed to anyone how Gerald died, a proof of forgiveness that Francis finds astounding.
For the past nine years Francis has been living on the road with another down-and-outer, Helen Archer, who managed one year at Vassar studying classical piano before her father died and her life fell apart. Smart and perceptive about people, Helen, like Francis, has tried unsuccessfully to find solace in the bottle, and now, suffering from a tumor and the effects of alcoholism, she tries to make peace with herself and her life. Both Francis and Helen understand that they have chosen their lives, and they cast no blame on others or on fate.
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