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Dubliners (Collector's Library) Hardcover – 1 Mar 2005

4.1 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: Macmillan Collector's Library; Reprints edition (1 Mar. 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1904919537
  • ISBN-13: 978-1904919537
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 9.9 x 1.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 726,689 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

About the Author

James Joyce was born in Dublin in 1882. He came from a reasonably wealthy family which, predominantly because of the recklessness of Joyce's father John, was soon plunged into financial hardship. The young Joyce attended Clongowes College, Belvedere College and, eventually, University College, Dublin. In 1904 he met Nora Barnacle, and eloped with her to Croatia. From this point until the end of his life, Joyce lived as an exile, moving from Trieste to Rome, and then to Zurich and Paris. His major works are Dubliners (1914), A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man (1916), Ulysses (1922) and Finnegan's Wake (1939). He died in 1941, by which time he had come to be regarded as one of the greatest novelists the world ever produced.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Peter Piper TOP 500 REVIEWER on 26 Jun. 2012
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
I am delighted to have found such a beautifully produced complete collection enabling me to simply listen and soak up the atmosphere of James Joyce's early twentieth century Dublin.

Hearing the stories read seems to me to be the perfect way to revisit or discover them for the first time. Each story in this CD box set is introduced by a period song transferred from a 78 rpm record, setting the scene for the faultless readings by Jim Norton to make a completely captivating whole.

The stories vary considerably, from the simply melancholic to, for example, 'Counterparts' which chillingly depicts drunkenness, menace and violence. They have all the resonance of a sad song telling of a love lost, a missed opportunity, the 'if only' or 'what might have been'.

This set contains two triple CD cases. Inside Part One there is a 12 page booklet which includes a useful description of the context of the stories and the struggle Joyce had to get them published. The Part Two booklet contains additional notes by Roger Marsh. Each booklet also contains several photographs of Dublin past, and the details of each track and timings.

Dubliners Part 1 CD contains: The Sisters, An Encounter, Araby, Eveline, After the Race, Two Gallants, The Boarding House, A Little Cloud, Counterparts and Clay.

Dubliners Part 2 CD contains: A Painful Case, Ivy Day in the Committee Room, A Mother, Grace, and The Dead.

Worth every penny, many times over!
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Format: Audio CD
Nobody else has reviewed this, so I thought I'd chip in. I've read 'Dubliners' a couple of times, although not for a few years now. But I've started listening to audiobooks when I travel, and I thought this one might be an interesting listen. The stories are excellent, and if you've not read 'Dubliners' before, you probably should. Most of them convey minor incidents in the lives of minor people, but they do so in a remarkable way. For all of Joyce's later invention & imagination, he also demonstrates here (and elsewhere, for that matter) an incredible insight into the ordinary lives of unexceptional people, and several of these stories are heartbreaking. (Some are also quite funny.)

Anyway, onto the Naxos audiobook. This six-disc set contains the all the stories, over about seven hours. The reader is Jim Norton, best known to me as Bishop Len Brennan from 'Father Ted'. I initially wondered if that was going to be a distraction, but (thankfully) it turns out that his normal reading voice is nothing like that character's distinct style. Norton does the range of characters very well, even in stories like 'Ivy Day in the Committee Room', where I never had any problems telling the multiple characters apart during lenghty dialogues. He even sings a few times! Naxos has also used some suitable music to top & tail most of the stories here, which adds suitably to the atmosphere.

Anyway, whether you've enjoyed 'Dubliners' before, or are trying to start on Joyce with his most accessible work, I can highly recommend this version. I've now bought the Naxos version of 'Finnegans Wake', in the hope that an (abridged) audio reading of that book will make it even faintly comprehensible...
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
Dubliners is the usual route into the fiction of James Joyce as it is considered the most "accessible" to readers. I have read the book and agree with that view, but having listened now to these wonderful recordings by Jim Norton I would also say that just listening to this set will do for anyone new to Joyce just as well as reading the book.
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By FictionFan TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 22 Mar. 2016
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Joyce's collection of 15 stories takes the reader through the various strata of Dublin society of the early years of the twentieth century. The prose is of a uniformly high standard, though some of the pieces are too fragmentary and unresolved to be fully satisfying. When Joyce does tell a story, though, he tells it excellently, making me rather regret that he didn't use standard prose and story-telling techniques more often.

The sum of the collection is greater than its individual parts, however, so that even the shorter character sketches add something to the reader's understanding of Dublin and its citizens. Despite the wide range of class and circumstance Joyce addresses, each one has a sense of total authenticity, of a deep understanding of how this society intermixes. There is a common theme running throughout, of people trapped, either by circumstance or because of decisions they have made, and many of the stories focus on a moment in the central characters' lives when they become aware of their trap. Drunkenness, violence and the stifling stranglehold of the Catholic church all play their part in showing a society where aspiration is a rare commodity, usually thwarted. I understand some of the stories were considered shocking at the time for their language and sexual content. Given the relative mildness of them to modern eyes, this fact in itself casts another light on how socially restricted the society was at the time of writing.

The prose is somewhat understated, with Joyce relying more on the penetrating examination of character rather than any flamboyancy of language or stylistic quirks, and that works well for me.
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