A Confederacy of Dunces (Penguin Modern Classics) Paperback – 30 Mar 2000
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It's been hailed as a masterpiece and reviled as trash, but A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole has never been lightly dismissed. By creating Ignatius J. Reilly, a bigger-than-life bag of wind stuffed with some of the most comically outrageous and disturbingly insightful opinions ever put to paper, Toole made an indelible mark on the landscape of American literature--a feat recognized with the posthumous publication of this novel, followed by a Pulitzer Prize. Forced to wade the lower depths of New Orleans society, the gargantuan Ignatius, his poor mother in tow, takes us on a tour de force through the back alleys and juke joints of the French Quarter of New Orleans as he implores the gods, railing against the hypocrisy of contemporary politics and the crushing weight of late capitalism. "The luminous years ... dimmed into dross; Fortuna's wheel had turned ... Having once been so high, humanity fell so low. What had once been dedicated to the soul was now dedicated to the sale." Toole's suicide at 32 silenced a uniquely promising literary voice, denying his critics and fans the opportunity to determine whether his talent was a flash in the pan or a first spark of genius. Read A Confederacy of Dunces and you'll no doubt have formed your own inflexible opinion, which you'll defend tenaciously against all reason. --George Laney, Amazon.com --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"What a delight, what a roaring, rollicking, footstomping wonder this book is. I laughed until my sides ached, and then I laughed on."See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
There are some genuinely funny moments, and the storyline is structured along the lines of classical farce drama, with the unfortunate Ignatius spiralling downwards into an ever more precarious position, both socially and financially. Not that he cares, mind you – he has only entered the world of work temporarily and under coercive pressure from his mother, biding his time until his great social commentary modelled on the philosophy of Boethius propels him to prominence. I agree with one other reviewer that it is this latter project that makes the book a little turgid at times, when Ignatius casts down pages of vitriolic invective in his diary. These sections aren’t boring, but neither are they that funny, and the reader might be forgiven for skipping them to get back to Ignatius loudly criticising the latest film, or condescendingly mocking whomever he encounters that day.Read more ›
Look out for Jones - Ooooeee, he ain't no vagran cawmniss. Just buy it, you won't go wrong.
Ok, some people will not find it funny no matter how hard they try - I mean, I just don't get how something like the comedy show, Little Britian, could ever become so popular. But I do think the majority of readers out there who want more than the latest Ben Elton novel or have already read Catch 22, won't just laugh at the way Ignatius J Reilly sees and interacts with the world, but will laugh so hard that you'll have to keep closing the book for a few seconds just to gain back your senses.
I've lent out and given away a lot of books to friends over the years, but none have done the rounds as much as this one.
Ignatius is a unique hero. He is overweight, superbly rude and self involved and treats his mother despicably - however, I still found myself liking this uncouth character. His high intelligence and fluent eloquence create an amusing sharp wit that everyone wishes for and few people possess. Not only did I find the character rather 'charming' (in his own absurd and bizarre way) I found myself wishing he could emerge real and thus I could 'meet him'.
Ah, truly a book to recommend. Surpasses most, and makes reading a true pleasure!
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an easy to read satire about Ignatius Reilly, a self-obsessed 30 year old man. Forced to work, he leaves a trail of chaos behind him as he moves from failed job to failed... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Mac McAleer
arrived well on time and good value havent read it yet but the 1st page was so funnyPublished 3 months ago by elle ness
I personally didn't like the book, not sure why it's a modern classic. Maybe due to the fact that the author killed himself because he couldn't get the book published. Read morePublished 4 months ago by clusp