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Apologize, Apologize!

Apologize, Apologize!

Написано Elizabeth Kelly

Озвучено Jeff Woodman


Apologize, Apologize!

Написано Elizabeth Kelly

Озвучено Jeff Woodman

оценки:
3/5 (21 оценки)
Длина:
10 часов
Издатель:
Издано:
Mar 2, 2009
ISBN:
9781598878677
Формат:
Аудиокнига

Описание

A brilliantly written epic tale of a quirky, dysfunctional family in the tradition of The Corrections and The Hotel New Hampshire.

Collie Flanagan was named after his mother’s favorite breed of dog. His brother, Bingo, was named for an Irish setter. Their names are the least of their worries because they’re Flanagans, members of a wildly wealthy, impossibly articulate family that also includes a philandering father, pigeon-racing uncle, radical activist mother, and domineering media mogul father whose own daughter has accused him of being a murderer.

As Collie searches for his place in the world, somewhere beyond the big, raucous family home on Martha’s Vineyard, he suffers insurmountable loss and does his best to be brave as he copes with people he has no choice but to love.

A coming-of-age tale centered on family life, Apologize, Apologize! is full of sparkling prose, surprises, tenderness—and dogs, both real and in name only.
Издатель:
Издано:
Mar 2, 2009
ISBN:
9781598878677
Формат:
Аудиокнига

Об авторе

I grew up on the peninsula of the bay near San Francisco, California. After twenty years, I decided not to live in the shadow and shame of my disorder. A shadow created over my life at twenty-one, I was riddled with a new condition, a condition to be managed and fostered over the next twenty years and a lifetime. At the beginning of my journey, I turned to writing as a form of expression; finding myself navigating through my experiences. I opened my books twenty years later with a new perspective. I write again and see a true transformation and growth. The shadow and shame of my disorder are now gone, and an appreciation of process found. I share my writing with all who want to see that growth in the light of struggle is possible. Thanks to support and love, an understanding is born. It is important to me to show that being diagnosed with a mental disorder is not the defining aspect of my life. It is a gift to have clarity and knowledge that with treatment, true success is possible. I was able to finish college with a bachelor’s degree in nursing, and today I am a registered nurse. To this day I continue to hide this part of my history in fear of judgment. Through this publication, I hope to encourage more light to shine on mental illness for the purposes of understanding and acceptance. I use a pen name for fear of judgment. I have hope that one day clarity and understanding for all are recognized and judgment cease.


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3.2
21 оценки / 21 Обзоры
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  • (4/5)
    A fictional memoir-style story told by Collie Ferguson about his life growing up in a dysfunctional, yet obscenely wealthy, family in New England. It is really a story of surviving through the ups and downs of life - learning to navigate through life's hardships and come out on the other side where you can accept life's events for what they are: nothing more and nothing less. We follow Collie as he grows, sometimes with excruciating slowness, from a boy to a man, both literally and figuratively. He lives in a loud household, surrounded by crazy relatives and noisy animals, the son of a mother who openly, shamelessly, prefers her younger son, Bing, over Collie, and never lets him forget it. His father and Uncle Tom are relentless alcoholics, whose binges are almost comforting to Collie, due to their predictable regularity. He is thrust back and forth between this world with his parents and a (seemingly) equally loveless relationship with his grandfather, Peregrine Lowell, referred to as "The Falcon" by Collie and Bing. As challenges arise in Collie's life, as they are wont to do, we watch as he tries to deal with them, at first, trying to escape or avoid them, but, eventually, learning to accept them as they come, changing course and adjusting the sails as necessary.
  • (3/5)
    Call it a Tragi-comedy, a mixture of Shakespeare and Ferrol Sams, with elegant writing and bawdy actions to thrill lovers of Southern Literature and literature fanatics. It's like Pat Conroy, but on the shores of Boston's rich and secluded coast. It would be similar if one of the Kennedy's suddenly decided they didn't want to be a Kennedy anymore, but were powerless to do anything but be that. Ultimately, it's the story of a family who lives under a rich and Paternal figure called "The Falcon," who dolls out money and keeps his daughter (the mother of the main characters) without need or wants...which of course she rebels against at every opportunity. She names her children after dogs... Collie and Bingo are her two sons, and the house bounds with dogs. Her husband is an Irish drunk, married because his hair was red. Imagine Conan O'Brian as an alcoholic. For the first half of the book, it's hard to eat and laugh at the same time (and since I read while I eat, it got difficult.) In the end, however, it's about the two brothers trying to flee their overbearing and eccentric mother, their dysfunctional family, and the mountains of money that seems to follow them wherever they go. The amazing thing about the book is that, for sometime after it was over, I didn't understand some of the symbols of the book. Yes, there are symbols. The dogs, the racing pigeons... the animals in the book are constant reminders that, however hard you try to change yourself, to become something new and different, without fail, you will always come home. And as my grandmother says, "Home is where, when you come there, they have to take you in."
  • (4/5)
    A very enjoyable book, a fun, quick read that makes you think.
  • (1/5)
    So very boring! Boring! Boring! Boring
  • (3/5)
    In this coming of age story, the main character, Collie endures the antics of his eccentric family. After the tragic death of his younger bother who is also the family's favorite, Collie struggles to find himself. Ironically, Collie's harsh and cold grandfather forms a bond with him and provides the structure that Collie never had. In a terrible journey to Sougth American, Collie realizes life's ironies while finding adventure. along the way. The author writes well and the story holds your interest but this story fell flat at the end without an ending that connects the people, Collie's experiences and relationships to his family together.
  • (4/5)
    The title of this book delayed my getting to it, but once I got beyond that, I enjoyed it. The characters are highly entertaining, 3-D and believable, yet you find yourself grateful that you didn't grow up in such a volatile family. I listened to this book on CD, the format in which it arrived, and liked the reader very much. He captured accent and inflection so well that I never wondered who was speaking. I found Kelly's generous use of similes amusing, overdone for the sake of writing quirky, rich similes. I'm very glad I went on this journey with Collie and his clan!
  • (3/5)
    I checked out an audio version of Apologize, Apologize! The story of Collie Flanagan and his dysfunctional and wealthy Irish-American family, was not so much funny as heart-breaking. My favorite part was the dogs--and the best thing about Collie's mother? The dogs! Collie goes through his life feeling a need to apologize--for not being his mother's favorite son, for not being his brother Bingo, and for various tragedies that occur in his life. He's sorry for everything!The writing is fine, but the story bogged down in the middle, and had no ending. Too bad, because there was some promise here!
  • (3/5)
    I was exhausted by the first part of the book. At times the individual anecdotes seemed redundant, and I definitely felt it could have been trimmed down. The second half of the book felt very familiar, and I couldn't help but think of Sue Miller and Jane Hamilton's work. ...Although, mostly Hamilton. Because of the combination of length and the strong echoes of other contemporary fiction writers, I'm giving this one a 3.
  • (2/5)
    I read a review in the newspaper that said it was "wacky, smart, and ambitious..." so I bought it. I'm not sorry I read it, but I was really disappointed with the writing. The author over-uses similes more than any writer I've ever read; sometimes there are three or four per page. These are from the first page of the book:...a house as big and loud as a parade......her father's money falling from the sky like ticker tape......opinions were as profuse as the tracks left by sandpipers...I thought she did well with dialog, but the characters were too contrived, in my opinion.
  • (4/5)
    Don't miss this! I think it can be enjoyed in any form. I was lucky enough to receive this ER audiobook and I am glad I did. Although it is lengthy, perhaps a bit too long, it is quite entertaining. Kelly's characters are fully developed and run the gambit from haughty, judgmental rich folks to knee-slapping funny drunks with witty rejoinders for every occasion. Collie Flanagan and his brother Bingo lead an exciting, eventful life, full of dogs, racing pigeons and erudite conversation, but fate, with its share of tragedy, interferes. By the time it does, the author has brought the reader so fully into the lives of her characters that you find yourself quite touched by their circumstances. Collie's father and uncle provide comic relief and it is welcome because as in real life, there is also considerable sadness in the lives of Kelly's characters. The focus of the story are the relationships that develop and wax and wane as time passes. It is an entertaining, enjoyable, touching story filled with life, love and honesty. It's also one-of-a-kind. Don't miss it!
  • (4/5)
    Poor Collie, uh, no I mean super-rich Collie, can't get anything right in his life. His mother openly dislikes him while she adores his younger brother, Bing, and his father and uncle are usually too drunk to care, but join in disparaging Collie constantly anyways. Collie is the serious, intelligent, practical one and Bing is a carefree trouble-loving playboy type. Both boys are encouraged by their parents and wealthy grandfather to take advantage of their obvious advantages. When tragedy strikes, life takes no mercy on Collie and he continues to bear the brunt of (it seems)everyone's disdain. University, volunteer work in El Salvador, practising medicine, racing pigeons...nothing brings satisfaction.Not as funny as the blurbs make it sound, nevertheless a witty story about a bunch of very strange characters. A bit heavy on the metaphors and an unsatisfying finish, but a worthy read.3 1/2 stars, or maybe 4. My ratings are strictly a reflection of how much I enjoyed the book and may be biased by other events going on in my life at the time of reading...in this case, deep involvement with my own rather disfunctional family!
  • (4/5)
    Summary: Collie Flanagan just wants a normal childhood. However, his family is about the farthest thing from normal that you can get. They live on Martha's Vineyard, and are extraordinarily wealthy, thanks to his newspaper mogul grandfather, known to everyone as The Falcon. His mother is a dog-loving Marxist. His father is an Irish Catholic philanderer and drunk. His Uncle Tom raises racing pigeons, and makes Collie answer obscure trivia questions to prove his intellectual merit. His younger brother, Bingo, is the golden boy troublemaker: he refuses to play by the rules, and everyone loves him all the more for it - while disparaging the comparably bland Collie. Irresponsibility, drama, and general craziness run rampant, and Collie must struggle to find his own way into adulthood - and his own place within his family.Review: While Elizabeth Kelly's debut novel is probably not something I would have picked off the shelf under my own power, it was a thoroughly refreshing change of pace from my normal fare, and promises good things to come from this author in the future. Kelly's writing is bitingly sharp and venomously funny, equally at home with Collie's self-deprecating pathos and his mother's acerbic quips. The story's an interesting take on a fairly standard coming-of-age tale; it reminded me somewhat of Running with Scissors, although the Flanagans are a different flavor of crazy... and fictional, of course. The "young man comes to grips with his family and himself" story thread mostly stays away from the directions we expect that story to take - sometimes to its benefit, and sometimes not. For example, while we might expect a character who is repeatedly and pointedly told that he is not as good as his brother to start to get a little bit bitter or resentful, but Collie never does - which is an interesting idea, but also eventually made him seem more than a little pathetic, and passive - not characteristics that I usually look for in a narrator.I think my major issue with this book was the plotting. The first half of the book reads like standard, hilarious (faux-) memoir. About halfway through, however, the book takes a sharp left into tragic melodrama, which was disconcerting, to say the least. After that, the pacing gets a little jumpy, and although things are happening, the real "plot" of the story is internal to Collie - how he grows and changes - so it kind of feels like things are happening around him for no very clear reason.I am glad I listened to it, rather than read it. Jeff Woodman was superb, as always, with the slight exception that I couldn't always tell Collie's dad and Uncle Tom apart... although that may be the writing, and not the narrating. On the whole, it was an enjoyable book, with some very sharp, smart writing and a clear, unique voice, and an unconventional story that was always interesting, even when the pacing left me a bit wrong-footed. 4 out of 5 stars.Recommendation: I think fans of modern adult fiction will enjoy this one, particularly readers who like "look what happened to me during my terrible, wacky childhood"-style memoirs (a la Running with Scissors or The Glass Castle).
  • (4/5)
    Although I didn't care for the title of this book & don't feel like it really captured the essence of the storyline, I was fairly impressed with Elizabeth Kelly's debut novel. I felt the characterization was done well and although there was an adequate amount of quirkiness in this story, it was also pulled together well with an underlying serious tone. I generally enjoy coming-of-age novels, and the thing that didn't rate this book higher for me was the frustration I felt with the main character's lack of ability to really grow up and stand up for himself. I initially felt sorry for Collie and his unfortunateness of having to grow up with a family of such eccentrics. But as the story continued on, I felt it began dragging & didn't quite live up to its potential during the last quarter of the book. But all in all, a good first novel for Kelly & I look forward to future works.
  • (4/5)
    Apologize, Apologize is the debut novel from Elizabeth Kelly, one of Random House Canada's New Faces of Fiction.This is the story of Collie Flanagan, his brother Bingo (both named after dogs, breaking the family tradition of naming boys after birds) and their chaotic, quixotic family. The boys live in Martha's Vineyard with their mother, father and his brother, Uncle Tom. The family does not have to worry about money, as their grandfather Peregrine is very wealthy. Collie is the antithesis of his immediate family - he wants to have a job, education and plans for the future. Bingo is opposite in every way. A simple day's outing for the boys turns into tragedy and further damages an already unstable family.I found the subtitle - 'a novel about a family that puts the personality in disorder' and on the flyleaf - 'Welcome to the world of the fantastic Flanagans' to be somewhat deceptive. I started reading expecting some family disarray and problems, but in more of a light hearted manner. I was unprepared for the cruelty and madness that is Collie's mother and the unconcern of his father. Bingo is the favoured son and Collie has been made very aware of it.'His magic expressed itself in many ways. I wouldn't have minded a little of what he had. There was no magic in me."The unspoken love shown by Uncle Tom towards the boys is somewhat redeeming. It is this character that I enjoyed the most.The Flanagan household is loud, tumultuous and boisterous. The conversations between family members are rambling, but strangely logical. They go every way but what you would expect. Kelly masterfully creates a sense of chaos with a cacophony of words and unexpected views." Tom once vanished for a day and a half trailing his crabby old cocker spaniel Fagan around the island - I was well into adolescence before I realized that other people actually made the decision for their dog about when to end the walk and not the other way around.Many of the scenes were emotionally painful and hard to read. I felt that some of the later plot lines, taken to San Salvador and Ireland seemed almost removed from the first part of the book. They are part of Collie's journey but I found them somewhat disconnected from the earlier character driven chapters. The ending is somewhat ambigous and anticlimatic and left me feeling unsatisfied. This was a poignant, magnetic read, one I'm glad I undertook. Definitely not your cookie cutter book.
  • (4/5)
    Does it ever seem like you can't do anything right, no matter what you do? Well you ain't seen nothin' yet! The main character grows up like this with a crazy family, and this is the story of exactly what happens and how he survives it all.
  • (2/5)
    I read a review in the newspaper that said it was "wacky, smart, and ambitious..." so I bought it. I'm not sorry I read it, but I was really disappointed with the writing. The author over-uses similes more than any writer I've ever read; sometimes there are three or four per page. These are from the first page of the book:...a house as big and loud as a parade......her father's money falling from the sky like ticker tape......opinions were as profuse as the tracks left by sandpipers...I thought she did well with dialog, but the characters were too contrived, in my opinion.
  • (1/5)
    Depressing . . . can nothing good happen to this guy?
  • (3/5)
    Just when you think your own family is nuts, read this. It will humble you back from the ledge!
  • (3/5)
    Please look away. I have no intension of hurting your feelings. I think I was just the wrong audience to read this book. Dear Everyone else, Now that the author is gone, the rest of this review is for everyone else. This time, I want to tell about my feelings and physical reactions when reading this book. First, I was very disappointed the dog on the cover was not the main character of the book. I love books about dogs. Even though there were dogs in the book, I never got to know them very much. After reading a few pages and roaring with laughter several times, I was feeling very peculiar. I had no idea where I was time wise with the book. I went to the back pages for help. There was an interview with the author and she did give some advice, although begrudgingly, on how to read the book. I tried her advice and still even though I was still laughing a lot, I didn’t see the book progressing. Even with the laughter coming from her witty writing, I still fell sound asleep three times during the next 200 pages. I was still wondering where is the story going. Finally when a couple of the main characters were in a cave, I knew the story was going there but somewhere after that, I lost my place again. When the main character goes to El Salvador, I woke up and stayed awake. Now this is writing! Bad for Collie, but it was very fortunate for me. To me that was the best part of the book. Then he left El Salvador and I was lost again but at least I had found a compass. Then the book ended.
  • (3/5)
    Please look away. I have no intension of hurting your feelings. I think I was just the wrong audience to read this book. Dear Everyone else, Now that the author is gone, the rest of this review is for everyone else. This time, I want to tell about my feelings and physical reactions when reading this book. First, I was very disappointed the dog on the cover was not the main character of the book. I love books about dogs. Even though there were dogs in the book, I never got to know them very much. After reading a few pages and roaring with laughter several times, I was feeling very peculiar. I had no idea where I was time wise with the book. I went to the back pages for help. There was an interview with the author and she did give some advice, although begrudgingly, on how to read the book. I tried her advice and still even though I was still laughing a lot, I didn’t see the book progressing. Even with the laughter coming from her witty writing, I still fell sound asleep three times during the next 200 pages. I was still wondering where is the story going. Finally when a couple of the main characters were in a cave, I knew the story was going there but somewhere after that, I lost my place again. When the main character goes to El Salvador, I woke up and stayed awake. Now this is writing! Bad for Collie, but it was very fortunate for me. To me that was the best part of the book. Then he left El Salvador and I was lost again but at least I had found a compass. Then the book ended.
  • (4/5)
    Collie Flanagan was born on the day JFK was assassinated. His family is insanely rich and somewhat eccentric. Collie’s mother, Anais, is very open about the fact that his brother, Bingo, is her favorite. As a matter of fact, it seems like everyone in the family favors Bingo, except Anais’s father, who was in Collie’s corner. Anais loathes her father (who Collie refers to as the Falcon) but tries not to antagonize him too much because he’s the one who controls the purse strings.Collie is a serious, studious young man. Most of his family can’t understand why he works so hard and why he wants to get a job. Bingo is happy-go-lucky – everyone loves him and he loves everyone – but he is full of mischief and gets kicked out of one school after another. At times, it seems Bingo is the thorn in Collie’s side.Even though his family is full of quirky characters, life seems to be moving along fine for Collie – he graduated from Andover and is now attending Brown. One day his family is struck by two terrible tragedies that change the course of Collie’s life forever.I enjoyed the quirky characters and the unusual family dynamics in Elizabeth Kelly’s book, Apologize, Apologize! At times the characters seemed “way out there,” yet they were still believable. I felt so much for Collie – he worked so hard and achieved so much, but seemed to be lost in this family of larger than life characters. Collie says, "Those fantastic Flanagans, they exist just outside the door leading to me. Technicolor characters in what seems like a separate cartoon-strip version of my life. Plain as a line drawing by comparison, I was the domestic equivalent of a moderate voice in a divided Ireland."This story is told from Collie’s viewpoint and the writing is wonderful – descriptive and conversational. I was drawn into Collie’s story and found myself thinking of it whenever I wasn’t able to read. My only complaint with the book is that I would have liked a less ambiguous ending.