Customer Reviews


57 Reviews
5 star:
 (32)
4 star:
 (7)
3 star:
 (3)
2 star:
 (3)
1 star:
 (12)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lots of fun at Finnegans Wake - and some advice/warnings to the curious
To start: I love this book. I love its music, its humour, and its pathos. I love its poetry, puns and sheer beauty.

However, you may not.

I would imagine that if you pick up Finnegans Wake, read a few pages, and begin to think "this is really annoying, what does it all mean?" then it's simply not the right book for you. If, by contrast, you read a...
Published on 30 Jan 2011 by Harry O'Carpus

versus
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Incomplete Book
This book is famously hard to read but it is well worth the effort. Reading it aloud or listening to a recording helps beacause there is so much poetry in the text but do read the complete book. The kindle copy of this book I received has passages missing from the end of book III chapter 3 and Book III chapter 4. There are a considerable number of pages missing although...
Published on 8 July 2012 by Andrew


‹ Previous | 1 2 36 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars JOYCE IS A GOOD CHOICE, 23 Mar 2014
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Words cannot express what inarticulate people want to say. Conversely, exceptionally eloquent people (including writers like James Joyce), while not struggling with self-expression, sometimes face difficulties making themselves understood. 'Finnegan's Wake', along with Joyce's other widely acknowlledged magnum opus, 'Ulysses', has an almost intimidating effect on people who have never read it. This is due to its reputation for being complex, lengthy and so erudite as to be virtually incomprehensible. Readers who might well think nothing of ploughing through Stephen King's weighty tomes (many of his titles exceed 700 pages, with Finnegan's Wake extending to a little over 600) are deterred by the famous book's reputation. I first read Joyce when I was a young boy (perhaps seven or eight-years-old) starting with A Portrait of The Artist as a Young Man and I enjoyed then, as I do now, his richly inventive, playful prose. I suppose by the time I read Ulysses, many years later as an adult, I was comfortable with a familiar author and I found the epic volume easily accessible. I cannot influence another person's taste with my personal opinion, which is all I am offering here. Some people will not like his style and that's fair enough. For my part, I can't face Tolstoy, although my admiration for him as a writer and a man is genuine and great. I will simply say that if you enjoy words, give Finnegan's Wake a try. As for failing to understand it, who cares? Generations of critics have argued the case for the meanings they individually have built careers around identifying in the book, but you and I can simply read for pleasure. It is, after all, a work of fiction.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars finnegans wake, 27 Jan 2007
some good reviews for this book, it does tend to provoke some strong reactions in its readers. joyce, a genius? an overbearing egotist? maybe both? a difficult question for some, but whatever, this book has caused a storm in the literary world since its publication. it is indeed difficult to read in the conventional sense, and in scope (through its often obscure allusions and language) is incredibly huge, covering ancient mythology, history, both of ireland and of the whole human race, language, christian theology etc etc, a mind bending project and probably as valuable as you care to make it. This text is definately demanding and requires a great deal of effort and concentration on the part of its readers, and while it is all too easy to give up on it as pompus intellectual showing off, or to try extremely hard to understand and master this book when you arent really gaining much from it, my advice would just to be honest and open minded, try it and see what you can learn from it (if anything). in my opinion joyce is an a grade 1st class superfunk human being, respect etc.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finnegans Wake, riverruningriddle; fluidanswer..., 24 Nov 2000
A mighty wallegory of the fallegory and resurrection of mankind. In this strange and beautifall book,a symphony of nightmares,myths and ledgends;an enigma drawing us ever deeper into shadows and sleep. DUBLIN;Tip. The structure of the book resembles a dream which has freed the author from the restraints of common lodgic;enabling him to compress all history and its development into a circular disign having no begining middle or end. Its a book that took a lifetime to write and takes a lifetime to read. Having this audio or any audio verse to listen to is a god send. Its a beautifull reading of the work,my only wish is that it had been unabridged.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, 26 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is the most amazing book ever written. Impossible to comprehend as it is, it it clear that Joyce chose every single word with meticulous care and precision. Every sentence is a poem, tickling the imagination and twisting your sense of grammar and language. Each and every line forces you to reconsider what you thought you know. Read it out aloud - taste the words with your ears and hear them with your tongue.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary book, 5 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Finnegans Wake (Kindle Edition)
Was reaquainting myself with the book which I had never managed to get through as a girl.
I think the best thing to do is to just dip in to it and not try and take it straight through!
It then becomes extremely rewarding for my money.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Finnegans Wake, 18 Feb 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Finnegans Wake (Audio CD)
I've only given this 3 stars cos I didn't know what else to do.
I read and re read portrait of the artist and dubliners when I was younger and really enjoyed them.
Later I read Ulysses and thoroughly enjoyed that. I liked his Pomes Pennyeach and Exiles.
But Finnegans wake? I've tried, twice, to start it. I won't give up on it, but I might die first.
I think this May be my best chance. I hope I make it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing, 22 Oct 2013
By 
M. Woods "Chaganagga" (Wales) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Finnegans Wake (Kindle Edition)
This is a cerebral helter skelter. I haven't got a clue what it's about, but the words flow out like a weird cacophony of life's experiences, as if Joyce tapped into the very essence of the human subconscious and written down what he found there. I would liken it to John Coltrane's "sheets of sound" This is Joyce's "sheets of thought"
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 3 years required to read & undestand it, 3 Oct 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Finnegans Wake. Well it took me 6 months to read Ulysses (including the excellent guide book necessary for comprehension). That's about 250 hours.
I thought I'd try FW next. I have 3 books to help understanding, that's 4 books to read. So far I have read the introduction & a few pages of FW. I recon it takes 2 hours to read each page of FW to have any hope of understanding it. The problem is that having deciphered each sentence & paragraph it takes so long that the previous paragraph has been almost forgotten & is difficult to reprise. I can appreciate that it is a great novel. BUT do I want to spend 2 to 3 years to read it? Somehow I feel that I can use the time so much better. I am not going to give up, but perhaps I will wait until I am infirm & obliged to stay in & read, & I have the necessary 1500 hours.
If I were cynical I could perhaps mock/joke about FW by saying that each word has so many meanings/interpretations/double meanings/etc/etc that by only a slight extension perhaps the whole OED (Oxford English Dictionary) could be replaced by one word since each word has all meanings. FW renders language both very rich & meaningless.
Reading & understanding this book is a truly daunting intellectual challenge & not for the fainthearted & not just `for fun'.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars An insurmountable monster, 17 Jun 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
On the face of it FINNEGAN'S WAKE is an intriguing curiosity. As a reader who enjoys peculiar fiction I can happily dip in at random and be amused by the advanced horseplay of the topsy-turvy text. It's a mingle-mangle of tangled yarns. A labyrinth of weird echoes.
But as a whole Joyce's monstrosity is unfathomable and insurmountable - and like encountering most monsters, in the end all a mere mortal can do is either avoid the beast (flee) or stand and fight: if you choose the latter then you are indeed brave, and dare I say somewhat foolish. I cannot see how this vast book of jumbles could ever be worth prolonged effort.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars here comes everybody, 17 Feb 2002
Finnegans Wake is not just the Wake of Finnegan but the awaking of Finnegans, hence the missing apostrophe. Beyond that there's not much to say, because this book's meaning (if it has one) is elusive(allusive? illusive?). Sometimes you feel like you're halfway there, other times you feel like you're stuck in a lift with hyena. But keep going. Like Ulysses you'll occasionally want to throw it out the window, but by the end, your tears will wet the pages. Just don't think of it as a novel, because it ain't a novel.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 36 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Finnegans Wake
Finnegans Wake by James Joyce (Paperback - 3 Nov 1986)
Used & New from: 0.01
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews