Book Reviews

A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole

Publisher: Penguin Books
Published:  1980
Meet Ignatious J. Reilly: flatulent, eloquent and pretty much unemployable…

The ordinary folk of New Orleans seem to think he is unhinges as well. Ignatious ignores them as he heaved his vast bulk through the city’s fleshpots in a noble crusade against vice, modernity and ignorance. But his momma has a nasty surprise in store for him. Ignatious must get a job. Undaunted, he uses his new-found employment to further his mission and now he has a pirate costume and a hot-dog cart to do it with…

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I really don’t know where to begin with this one. I had no intention of reviewing it. This was read solely for my enjoyment… and because Billy Connolly said it was his favourite book.

Let me explain. There was a two-part series called “Made in Scotland” shown on the BBC a few weeks ago. It was basically a long interview with Billy about Scotland, his love for the country and his memories growing up in Glasgow. It was brilliant. In this show he mentioned that his favourite book, and the book he has bought as a gift for many people, is A Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole.

Now, I had heard of this book but had never read it or had any urge to read it. But if Sir Billy says it’s good then it deserves a read! I was quick off the mark and managed to reserve the only copy in Aberdeen from the library (there’s now a waiting list of 13 people for it! Read about that here!)

I really don’t know what to say.

Did I enjoy it? Yes! I really did.

Why? I’ve absolutely no idea!

It’s quite possibly THE most bizarre book I’ve ever read. Ignatious J. Reilly is a work of comedy genius. He is, without doubt, completely unhinged but in a strangely tragic and endearing way. He, along with a cast of other misfits (including an exotic dancer with a Cockatoo), makes A Confederacy of Dunces an easy, quick and highly amusing read.

If you’ve read it drop me a note in the comments – I’d love to hear your thoughts!

⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️ ⭐️

❤️ Jo

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