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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A rich book
This is the second James Joyce book I have read and it goes to reinforce the feeling I had after reading the first that that writer is a great storyteller. In fact, I consider
James Joyce's Dubliners as one of the best collection of short stories ever put together. The settings are amazing and the rich and lively characters all combine with the incredible plots to...
Published on July 29 2005 by Sancho Mahle

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3.0 out of 5 stars Not reader friendly
The book is a series of short stories about different groups of people in Dublin, Ireland. Joyce uses these short stories to expose the social wrongs and paralysis of morals around the turn of the 20th century in Dublin. All of the stories end in tragedy, sadness, or continuation of a previous wrong. James Joyce's Dubliners was an interesting book, to say the least. At...
Published on March 23 2001 by Aaron McCoy


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5.0 out of 5 stars Insight into Dublin circa 1904, Nov. 11 2003
By 
girldiver "Enjoy!" (tangled up in blue.) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Dubliners (Mass Market Paperback)
I am not a fan of James Joyce but how can you not read this collection of short stories about ordinary everyday people living in Dublin circa 1904. Each story is unique and seperate from the others but each draws you into the lives of Dublins' People.
You can feel the despair of a lover, the doubts of children, and the renewel of life in death. You will no doubt love some of the stories, hate some of the stories, and be moved emotionally by the collection of short stories in the DUBLINERS.
If you have never read Joyce this is an excellent introduction to his work. I do beleive if he had never written another word after the DUBLINERS he still would have left his mark with this collection of short stories.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Imminently readable, Feb. 10 2003
By 
Peggy Vincent "author and reader" (Oakland, CA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Dubliners (Paperback)
Many people, associating Joyce with Ulysses and dense, difficult writing, avoid his other works as well. That's a mistake. Introduce yourself to The Dubliners, a series of unrelated stories about the people of the great city. It's imminently readable, enjoyable, and is the best way to begin to take a dive into the writing of one of the 20th Century's greatest writers. Then go on to The Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man - and soon enough you may even find yourself actually reading Ulysses!
Go ahead. Do yourself a favor. You won't regret it.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Just brilliant, Jan. 6 2003
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This review is from: Dubliners (Paperback)
This is a beautiful, fantastic collection of stories which offer an accessible and beautiful taste of Joyce's genius and the pathos of the inhabitants of his Ireland. There are no bizarre usages, weird cultural references, or even too many very specific Irish words. This a book for anyone who wants to appreciate some of the finest stories in the English language. Some of the stories are truly heartbreaking.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Archetype of Short Story Fiction, June 30 2002
This review is from: Dubliners (Mass Market Paperback)
Perfection is the best way to describe this classic story collection by the legendary James Joyce. Dubliners follows the lives of ordinary folks in early twentieth century Ireland. Instead of using dramatic events such as many conventional short stories do, Joyce centered his tales on what seemed to be inconsequential. This groundbreaking literary formula succeeded and Dubliners went on to become one of the most greatly praised and athologized works of all time. By focusing on the magnitude of simple things, Joyce provided writing that truly connects the reader with the character through empathy. Examples of such include Araby in which an adolescent boy seeks romance and idealizes a beautiful girl who pays him no mind, and A Painful Case that portrays a lonely man who is haunted by a relationship he had with a married woman after he hears of her untimely death.
Each story in Dubliners contains gorgeously descriptive passages and words that dance across the pages. Though the themes may be dismal and the people Joyce writes of often come up empty-handed, the reader will likely find an underlying optimism that hardship builds strength and hope will prevail.
Interestingly, Dubliners barely came to print. Years of controversy hindered the 1914 release of the book, as many publishers regarded the stories as immoral and risque. Fortunately the public embraced it, and today we should all be required to read this enduring work by one of Ireland's finest, Mr. James Joyce.
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5.0 out of 5 stars a classic!, May 17 2002
By 
momazon "cjd" (Astoria, NY USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Dubliners (Mass Market Paperback)
James Joyce's The Dubliners is 15 short stories about various people of different ages and backgrounds in Dublin, all of whom are experiencing some sort of emotional paralysis. Joyce started this work in his early 20s circa 1904 and wrote it progressively over a number of years.
Although it does not contain much dialogue, the prose is engaging and brings the various characters to life. It makes you analyze what you would do in each of these real day-to-day situations which could easily paralyze you as well.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Joyce's Classic Early Collection of Stories, April 13 2002
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This review is from: Dubliners (Mass Market Paperback)
The first of James Joyce's books, "Dubliners" is a collection of fifteen stories written between 1904 and 1907. Joyce wrote the first of the fifteen stories in this collection, "Sisters," in Ireland in 1904. The story was published in August of that year under the pseudonym "Stephen Daedalus." Joyce wrote the last, longest and most famous of the stories, "The Dead," in Rome in 1907. The stories were published in the book known as "Dubliners" in 1914. While there are many editions of "Dubliners" in print, the definitive edition of the work is generally considered to be the corrected text prepared by Robert Scholes in consultation with Richard Ellman, Joyce's biographer. Random House publishes the Scholes edition under its Modern Library imprint and I recommend this edition.
"Dubliners" stands as one of the Ur-texts of modernism, a startlingly original collection of stories set in turn-of-the-century Dublin that began the Joycean literary project. That project subsequently moved through the increasingly difficult, and characteristically modernist, iterations of "Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man," "Ulysses" and "Finnegan's Wake." Like those succeeding texts, the interested reader can find thousands of pages of commentary on "Dubliners," the study of Joyce's works being akin to a Talmudic undertaking, an undertaking that can, if one chooses, occupy an entire life.
Joyce once commented that the stories of "Dubliners" constitute a "chapter of moral history" that represents the "first step towards the spiritual liberation of [Ireland]." He also said, "I call the series 'Dubliners' to betray the soul of that hemiplegia or paralysis which many consider a city." The stories are, in other words, inherently critical (although also, at times, appreciative) of the Dublin life that Joyce abandoned, living and writing as an expatriate in Paris, Trieste, Rome, and Zurich for nearly the entirety of his adult life.
The stories operate on two levels. On one level, the stories are realistic narratives of every day life in Dublin. On another level, however, the stories are suffused with symbolism, with recurring, allusive images of spiritual, sexual and political meanings that mark a departure from nineteenth century literary realism and make "Dubliners" an enduring, and deservedly canonical, modernist narrative.
The first story, "Sisters," begins with a striking example of the tone of the stories in "Dubliners." A young boy stands, in the evening, looking up at the shadows flickering through the window of an upstairs room where a priest is dying:
"Every night as I gazed up at the window I said softly to myself the word 'paralysis'. It had always sounded strangely in my ears, like the word 'gnomon' in the Euclid and the word 'simony' in the Catechism. But now it sounded to me like the name of some maleficent and sinful being. It filled me with fear, and yet I longed to be nearer to it and to look upon its deadly work."
Thus, a vivid, realistic image appears in the reader's mind, but so does a collection of words that suggest meanings and themes that go far beyond the real, that capture physical and intellectual and religious undercurrents, the inner life of a young boy living in Dublin.
"Sisters" is a brilliant story, as is "The Dead" and nearly every other story in "Dubliners" (excluding, perhaps, one or two, the worst being "After the Race," a story that Joyce reluctantly included in the collection). Realistic in its narratives, richly allusive in its language and symbolism, "Dubliners" is one of a handful of story collections that truly deserves the label "classic" and should be read and studied by every serious reader.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Elegant Realism, March 15 2002
By A Customer
This review is from: Dubliners (Hardcover)
Dubliners is a monument to the power of observation, elegantly translated. Speaking as someone who has tried off and on to write short fiction, Joyce's book at once inspires and devastates the creative impulse. Why bother? So many times I've felt like Little Chandler in A Little Cloud, who has a brief revelatory moment, thinks he might be able to write a poem about it, and then immediately begins to imagine the praise that the critics will heap on his fine collection. Could anything be more deeply, laughably human?
I can't imagine how anyone who likes to read and has lived among other human beings could not appreciate at least a few of the stories. For me, they're life affirming in a deeper way than any religion could be. And that's what Joyce intended. He wanted us to stop looking for redemption in some vague nether region and look as closely as we can manage at the life right here in front of our eyes. Joyce asks that we look at ourselves and see, really see, what we are, because only then can we get beyond all the fear, vanity, and self-delusion.
All the great myths weren't handed down from on high; they came from us. We have all the power. It's just a matter of using it, which is exactly what the Dubliners, and a pretty high percentage of the human race, now and forever, have not done.
There are a few stories in Dubliners that don't quite measure up, but the majority rank among the best ever written. I don't know of any literature more perfect than Araby and The Dead.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Joyce's Classic Early Collection of Stories, Dec 19 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Dubliners (Hardcover)
The first of James Joyce's books, "Dubliners" is a collection of fifteen stories written between 1904 and 1907. Joyce wrote the first of the fifteen stories in this collection, "Sisters," in Ireland in 1904. The story was published in August of that year under the pseudonym "Stephen Daedalus." Joyce wrote the last, longest and most famous of the stories, "The Dead," in Rome in 1907. The stories were published in the book known as "Dubliners" in 1914. While there are many editions of "Dubliners" in print, the definitive edition of the work is generally considered to be the corrected text prepared by Robert Scholes in consultation with Richard Ellman, Joyce's biographer. Random House publishes the Scholes edition under its Modern Library imprint and I recommend this edition.
"Dubliners" stands as one of the Ur-texts of modernism, a startlingly original collection of stories set in turn-of-the-century Dublin that began the Joycean literary project. That project subsequently moved through the increasingly difficult, and characteristically modernist, iterations of "Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man," "Ulysses" and "Finnegan's Wake." Like those succeeding texts, the interested reader can find thousands of pages of commentary on "Dubliners," the study of Joyce's works being akin to a Talmudic undertaking, an undertaking that can, if one chooses, occupy an entire life.
Joyce once commented that the stories of "Dubliners" constitute a "chapter of moral history" that represents the "first step towards the spiritual liberation of [Ireland]." He also said, "I call the series 'Dubliners' to betray the soul of that hemiplegia or paralysis which many consider a city." The stories are, in other words, inherently critical (although also, at times, appreciative) of the Dublin life that Joyce abandoned, living and writing as an expatriate in Paris, Trieste, Rome, and Zurich for nearly the entirety of his adult life.
The stories operate on two levels. On one level, the stories are realistic narratives of every day life in Dublin. On another level, however, the stories are suffused with symbolism, with recurring, allusive images of spiritual, sexual and political meanings that mark a departure from nineteenth century literary realism and make "Dubliners" an enduring, and deservedly canonical, modernist narrative.
The first story, "Sisters," begins with a striking example of the tone of the stories in "Dubliners." A young boy stands, in the evening, looking up at the shadows flickering through the window of an upstairs room where a priest is dying:
"Every night as I gazed up at the window I said softly to myself the word 'paralysis'. It had always sounded strangely in my ears, like the word 'gnomon' in the Euclid and the word 'simony' in the Catechism. But now it sounded to me like the name of some maleficent and sinful being. It filled me with fear, and yet I longed to be nearer to it and to look upon its deadly work."
Thus, a vivid, realistic image appears in the reader's mind, but so does a collection of words that suggest meanings and themes that go far beyond the real, that capture physical and intellectual and religious undercurrents, the inner life of a young boy living in Dublin.
"Sisters" is a brilliant story, as is "The Dead" and nearly every other story in "Dubliners" (excluding, perhaps, one or two, the worst being "After the Race," a story that Joyce reluctantly included in the collection). Realistic in its narratives, richly allusive in its language and symbolism, "Dubliners" is one of a handful of story collections that truly deserves the label "classic" and should be read and studied by every serious reader.
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5.0 out of 5 stars This Joyce guy might amount to something, Dec 5 2001
By 
This review is from: Dubliners (Mass Market Paperback)
I wish I could stand up here and make some pretentious claim that this is the "greatest short story collection of all time!" or something along those lines but I generally don't read short stories or short story collections. But I like James Joyce and so figured what the heck, I made it through Ulysses, this should be a cakewalk. So I read it and if you were wowed by Ulysses then this should reconfirm Joyce's genius for you and that he could do other writing besides that wacky postmodern stuff (before there really was a postmodern). If you're not a Joyce fan most of these (other than a notable handful) probably won't convert you. In essence these are Joyce's portraits of the people of Dublin and the city itself, most of these stories are character sketches, mostly following a few people around as they go about their lives. They were written over a period of time so the quality does vary a bit, the first few stories I don't find anything special but by the time you get to around "Two Gallants" the quality takes a sharp spike upward and stays there right until the end. The prose is fairly easy to follow, the worst part is deciphering all the Irish names and slang that are used liberally for obvious reasons . . . if anything it showed me how two cultures who technically speak the language can sound so different. The stories run the gamut of the "slice of life" genre, if such a thing exists, showing people from all walks of life and all classes of society, showing them as realistically as Joyce could, all their fears and foibles, warts and all. At his best he makes you live the lives of the characters and immerses you deeply into the city of Dublin, probably more than any group of short stories has ever brought a city to life. If you're still not convinced, then take this advice, buy the book for the sake of only one story, the last story in the collection, "The Dead" . . . simply put it is one of the best pieces of short fiction I have ever read. It starts off mundanely enough at a party but by the time the characters leave the party and go back to their hotel the writing becomes something almost otherworldly and Joyce starts writing some of the most evocative prose ever put on paper. If the last few pages don't send chills down your spine, then you must be dead. That's the only explanation. After that gem, everything else is just icing on the cake. Simply put, everyone should read "The Dead" and if you're the type of person whose fancy shall be struck by the rest of the stories here, so much the better.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Dark and subtle, a snapshot, Nov. 2 2001
By 
Cambel "cambel" (Washington, DC USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Dubliners (Mass Market Paperback)
This frozen moment in time of Ireland not so long ago captures brilliantly the sense of frustration, regret, sometimes hope which is all tied in with religeon and history that living in Dublin was.
From the story of the wife possibly regretting her marriage to the young boy who wants nothing more than to buy a gifr for the girl that he almost confuses in his head with the virgin Mary, James Joyce gives you an entrance into the minds of people that live under the rules of their families, their government, their church and their culture. If you don't mind the darkness of the book it is truly wonderful.
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Dubliners
Dubliners by James Joyce (Hardcover - Nov. 26 1991)
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