Penelope Unbound (Paperback)Mary Morrissy (author)
On their arrival in Trieste in 1904, James Joyce left Norah Barnacle outside a railway station while he went to scare up money. He got embroiled in a fight with a couple of sailors and was locked up for his troubles. A penniless Norah was left alone for almost an entire day and night sitting on their suitcases at the station in a city where she knew no one and where she didn't speak the language. In real life, Norah waited for him. This novel asks - what if she hadn't? In Penelope Unbound, one of our greatest living novelists weaves a spellbinding speculative history. By unhooking Norah from her famous husband, Morrissy gives her a compelling new voice, with heartbreak and humanity all her own. Sensual, inventive and uproariously funny, Penelope Unbound reimagines a Joycean heroine for the 21st century.
Publisher: Banshee Press
Number of pages: 336
Dimensions: 216 x 135 mm
"...a novel of great brilliance and inventiveness...Penelope Unbound is a masterwork" — John Banville, The Observer; "Here is a treat for admirers of James Joyce and his enigmatic wife, Nora Barnacle...laugh-aloud funny as well as taking some imaginative leaps that will literally take your breath away" — Alannah Hopkin, The Examiner; “The Norah Barnacle we find in Penelope Unbound moves through familiar spaces, but she occupies them in fresh, provocative ways. Mary Morrissy, one of the brightest, most original stars in the firmament of Irish writing, gives us a vivacious, wise Norah who takes charge of her destiny. Morrissy’s great imaginative powers and shockingly good turn of phrase make a lively, dazzling journey of Norah’s re-imagined lifepath.” — Nuala O'Connor; “Penelope Unbound weaves a moving, imaginative, surprising, and hugely involving alternative history: the life of Norah Barnacle without James Joyce. The language toys with Joyce’s rhythms, but is distinctively its own – it’s a language that belongs to Mary Morrissy’s compellingly reimagined Norah, who is, like this novel itself, funny, richly perceptive and startlingly alive. A wonderful, fascinating book.” — Kevin Power; “A new Mary Morrissy is always a treat. She’s a master of capturing each of her character’s unique voice and Penelope Unbound is Morrissy at the height of her game: attentive to the details of her story, linguistically playful and captivating at every turn. This novel felt like stepping into a familiar story through a very different door.” — Jan Carson; “A dazzling portrait of Norah Barnacle, resplendent in a reimagined life freed from the shadow of her famous husband. And what a character she is: spirited, funny, lively, intelligent, brought to vivid life in sparkling, sensuous prose by a novelist at the height of her powers.”— Lisa Harding; “Penelope Unbound is a scintillating, audacious, and engrossing novel. It wittily deconstructs the lives of James Joyce and Norah Barnacle and gives them back to us in vivid and freshly conceived form. Yet, in imagining a different and independent trajectory for Norah, it shows how her complex love for Joyce still endures and how Dublin permanently harbours and enshrines his fiction.”— Anne Fogarty
You may also be interested in...
Would you like to proceed to the App store to download the Waterstones App?