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4.6 out of 5 stars689
4.6 out of 5 stars
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on 22 October 2011
a beautifully written, heart warming piece of literature. i caught an episode of mrs browns boys on the bbc and went to explore this history of the series. i was overjoyed at the list of books amazon had to offer, the mammy (now published as agnes brown), the chisslers, the granny and the young wan. by the time i had finished the books i felt anges was one of my best friends, the laughs i had with her at the kitchen table over a cuppa tay.
brendan o'carroll has tapped into this life of a hard working woman, showing the challenges facing widowed women, made it his own, showing how much love he has to give on every page.
there is also an irish tv show, further bbc tvshows, dvd's, a stage show and further books. all well worth reading/viewing.
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HALL OF FAMEon 27 January 2003
The photograph on the cover of this book is spectacular, and everything Mr. Brendon O'Carroll includes within is wonderful! This Irish tale is unlike any other I have read. The book is not cluttered with Irish cliché's, which even if true to one degree or another, can nonetheless become tiresome. It has often been said that there are no happy endings in an Irish tale, and while this is the first installment of three, it would take multiple disasters to change the overall mood of this Family and Friends.

The story is about two female friends, the joy they share, their everyday lives, and the pain that all relationships eventually suffer. However this friendship is not subject to damage or limitation. The dialogue is a riotous tear from beginning to end. Your own laughter will continually interrupt your page turning, but the intrusions are part of the fun. The characters laugh until they hold their sides, and you will be as well as Mr. O'Carroll's dialogue is brilliant. There is a scene when a driving lesson is to take place. If I have read better humor I cannot remember what it was.

The wonderful part of the laughter in this book is that it is not only for covering the pain of daily life. The lives you encounter are far from consistently ideal, but the laughter and joy these women share and spread is genuine, not dark, and not meant as emotional misdirection.

This is a brief work; however the Author managed to include so much more than emotional extremes. The 15-year-old eldest son of Agnes meets a man who offers him money for a job that makes no sense to the boy. Think of every negative direction this opening can take and then forget them all. Mr. O'Carroll takes this vignette within, "Mammy", and shows so much of what Humanity could be. The beauty of this mini-tale is that it is not the naïve thoughts of wide-eyed youth. It is a look at how people should treat each other, what should be important when we meet someone, and most importantly how foolish our normal reactions routinely are.

This is one very talented man with a pen.
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on 31 March 2000
I thought this book was great and found it an enjoyable light-hearted read. The characters are like any that you would meet in every day Dublin life. The sequels (Chiselers and The Granny) have a more tragic story line and reduced me to tears amid my chuckles at the antics of this amazing Dublin family.
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on 16 May 2011
absolutley loved this book, Brendan O'Carroll is a natural story teller, so funny,so real and down to earth. Have also read the young wan, the chislers and the granny, could not put it down.
Would hightly recomend these books
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on 20 September 2002
The mammy is so funny you can almost feel that you are part of the family when reading it. Once I started reading it I could not put it down. Though life was difficult in the 60's it brings out the funnier sides of life. Definitely a book to read if you are feeling a bit down because I laughed till I cried at some of the antics Agnus and her best friend get up to. I was unable to put the book down for long I just had to keep reading it. I have also purchased 'The Chiseller and The Granny' the follow up books to this one and cannot wait to read them. I've told everyone I know to read them. Absolutely brilliant!!!! As a history student I have to read some serious stuff so this was the perfect light relief to read.
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on 5 May 2003
From the very moment I had this little book with the big story in my hand, I couldn't wait to open it and start.
I unplugged the phone and ran a hot bath 'cos I just knew I couldn't be disturbed from the life of Agnes Browne and her rowdy brood. Each page was turned with gusto and I almost drowned myself in the bath laughing out loud at this wonderfully disfunctional family.
Must do.........read this in public and share the magical talent of Brendan O'Carroll with absolute strangers!
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on 16 April 2013
My disappointment is no reflection of his writing, which is superb and so true to the brilliant character we know from the BBC series I could see the comedic moments coming and was prepared to laugh out loud but..never did. i soon realised that hi scomedy is a mainly visual one, for me at least, that gains so much more from the timing, the facial expressions and physical reactions. It was full of classicly humorous situations but without the all important body language it was simply a sweet/sad story.
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on 30 April 2001
I was told this book was both funny and sad, neither which impressed much, as I like a thriller. How wrong can one be, I laughed till I cried, and cried till I laughed. The best ever!!
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on 24 March 2013
This was a real disappointment after the shows. Not very funny and quite short.For me not worth the price. Not recommended
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on 28 June 2011
Sorry only managed first couple of pages whilst having my lunch at work and then cracked up laughing need to spend a bit of time locked away in a soundproof darken room laughing F*%$&%***
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