Angela’s Ashes by Frank McCourt is a pulitzer prize winning memoir and my pick for March’s The Co-op Reads! Angela’s Ashes is set in the depression era of Brooklyn and then the slums of Limerick, Ireland. The author, Frank McCourt, shares the story of his troubled childhood and the struggles of growing up in poverty. All while creating a sense of humor amongst the hardships he and his family endured.
Coming from a deep line of Irish Catholics, this book really hits home for me in many ways. My grandfather was one of 12 brothers and sisters, and for the better part of his childhood they didn’t have running water or a toilet in there humble home. I can still hear my grandfathers constant grumbling of “Jesus, Mary and Joseph what have you done”. Every situation, good or bad, could be solved by repeating the Hail Mary prayer while holding a pair of rosary beads. Not to mention, the profession of deep love for the motherland, Ireland. While I don’t have the same deep connection to Ireland, or share a deep faith in the Catholic religion, I enjoyed the sense of familiarity that Frank McCourt’s story brought me. Allowing me to appreciate the similar struggles that many of my ancestors also endured.
I do suggest listening to this book, because of the great irish accent it’s read in. As the listener it feels like you have become a fly on the wall, watching this family’s life unravel before your very eyes!