Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know: The Fathers of Wilde, Yeats and Joyce Colm T?ib?n



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An intimate study of three of Irelands greatest writers from one of its best-loved contemporary voices __________________ A father…is a necessary evil. Stephen Dedalus in Ulysses In Mad, Bad, Dangerous to Know Colm Toibin takes three of Irelands greatest writers – Oscar Wilde, W.B. Yeats and James Joyce – and examines their earliest influences: their fathers. With his inimitable wit and sensitivity, Toibin introduces us to Wilde Senior, the philandering doctor whose libel case prefigured that of his son; the elder Yeats, an impoverished artist who never finished a painting; and to John Stanislaus Joyce, the hard-drinking, storytelling father of James, who couldnt feed his own family. This is an illuminating study of how each of these men cast a long shadow not only over the lives of their famous sons, but over the works for which they are celebrated and cherished. __________________ Astonishing to read. Toibin has a hawk-like eye for literary subtleties, and a generosity towards his subjects that is warm Sunday Times Funny, exciting, illuminating, wonderful, so engaging. Tells us more than a little about our own selves along the way Irish Times There is something interesting and insightful on almost every page Observer Sparkling, subtle, witty and often deeply moving . . . A classic Fintan OToole, New Statesman Scintillating, imaginative, enlightening and powerfully moving throughout Roy Foster, Spectator

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