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A Word in Your Ear: How & Why to Read James Joyce's Finnegans Wake Paperback – Import, 26 Apr 2005
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A smart and readable guide to the masters neglected nightmaze. -- Brendan de Caires
A stunning performance and of exemplary clarity. -- The Compulsive Reader
He writes quite carefully and lovingly and joyfully about the Finnegans Wake experience. Its a great read. -- Messes of Mottage
From the Publisher
"A sine qua non for Joyceans" (Clarence Sterling). "Certainly the best intro to the Wake Ive seen" (Andrew H. Blom). Whether youre new to Finnegans Wake or a long familiar friend, this lively and readable essay will guide, refresh, and delight. The author provides essential background information and helpful reading techniques while conveying the pleasures of delving into Joyces dense text.See all Product description
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Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
Yes, the Wake is certainly no typical novel. But I think some of the terms applied such as "the most impenetrable book ever written" are a bit melodramatic. The Bible has passages that are difficult to understand, right? So is it impenetrable? Quantum mechanics is nearly impossible to grasp. Impenetrable? No.
Impenetrable implies that the reader will get nothing from the book. I actually enjoy and gain regeneration from reading the wake. No, I can't decipher every line. But I can follow the general idea and love the word play. Play. See that's the real key here. Play. If the book is approached as play, as fun, the reader will enjoy the book.
And that brings me to A Word in Your Ear. The author states upfront that his book is not a deep scholarly dissertation on the Wake. It's a starter, an encouragement to dive in. As that, the book serves the purpose. If you want to just get started with the Wake, this book is adequate to "get you in". Go deeper if you'd like with other dissections. But for a toe in the water, this book will serve the purpose.
Kitcher's invitation has especially reawakened my interest in the dark book. I find myself in that late stage of life when I wonder, with HCE, ALP and Joyce if it's all been worth it.