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Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha by Roddy Doyle

Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha (1993)

by Roddy Doyle

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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3,408612,331 (3.67)220

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English (58)  Romanian (1)  Italian (1)  Dutch (1)  All languages (61)
Showing 1-5 of 58 (next | show all)
Disjointed and meandering tale of an Irish boy in the mid-1960s.

Mostly he hangs out with his buddies, stealing things, setting fires, and tormenting his younger brother. There's a slow-developing subplot about the disintegration of his parents' marriage and his trying to cope with the event.

Booker prize winner, which should have warned me. I don't know their criteria, but am generally disappointed with their choices. ( )
  LyndaInOregon | Dec 14, 2018 |
Why would you want to read a book that frames every adventurous episode in a childhood in a parents awareness of the danger instead of a child's feeling of power and magic? Patrick may relate the rather destructive romps through the suburbs developing around his, but the narrative never gets within his feeling of them, but retains an adult tone that forces the adult reader away from any fellow feeling arising from similar episodes. Patrick's brother has withdrawn for him and his awareness is overwhelmed by his parent's constant, singular, unresolving disagreement. ( )
  quondame | Sep 22, 2018 |
Doyle depicts the childhood adventures of Patrick "Paddy" Clarke, a ten-year-old living in the Dublin suburbs. As most boys, he gets into his share of mischief. He hangs out with a group of male friends. We come to know the boys, their parents, their teachers, and even the priest in the course of the novel. The writing style is unconventional, but critics liked it well enough to award it the Booker Prize. No chapters can be found although white space between certain episodes give the readers an opportunity for a break. While I really didn't care for the "brats" or their language at times, it does provide a great snapshot of Irish life in the 1960s. ( )
  thornton37814 | Sep 14, 2018 |
Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha achieves the remarkable feat of both depicting a childhood at its most normal and humdrum while also drawing out something much more profound about being a kid and coming of age. While Paddy and his friends are lighting fires, stealing magazines, and torturing his younger brother in the most typical of lowgrade miscreant ways, Doyle does a remarkable job of capturing the casual cruelty of childhood, the bullying, the posturing. At times the book is so good at portraying these things that it's almost hard to read, despite its impressive quality.

Doyle nails the random transitions of his child narrator's mind, the relationships that skirt the emotional depth that an adult can see but a child cannot, and the affliction of younger siblings that sits side by side with love. Most impressive of all, however, is Doyle's depiction of Paddy's confusion when adult situations have outpaced his understanding of them, but only by the slimmest of margins, so that while he knows something is amiss he can't grab ahold of what, if anything, he can do to fix it. Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha is one of those books that, for lack of any sort of linear plot, would seem to be about nothing, but in taking a snapshot of a life, it ends up being about a little of everything. ( )
  yourotherleft | Nov 24, 2017 |
This book did not disappoint. Roddy Doyle has managed to inhabit a ten-year old boy's mind so completely that you could almost believe Patrick (Paddy) Clarke wrote this himself.

Paddy is the oldest of 4 Clarke children growing up on the outskirts of Dublin. His best friend is Kevin and he hangs around in a group with Fluke, Liam, Aidan, James and his little brother, Francis (whom he calls Sinbad). They explore the neighbouring fields, light fires, build hideouts, swim in the ocean, run through the pipes being laid along their road and all the other little mischiefs that children get into. At the same time Paddy is bright, inquisitive, thoughtful and worried about the fights his parents keep having. There are no chapters in the book. The days follow one another just as they do in real life. Paddy is the type of boy that would be giggling in a corner with his friend over some naughty word one minute and wanting a hug from his mom the next.

To use one of Paddy Clarke's favourite words, this book is brilliant. No wonder it won the Booker prize in 1993. ( )
  gypsysmom | Aug 25, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 58 (next | show all)
This must be one of the truest and funniest presentations of juvenile experience in any recent literature.
The novel's boldest feature is its infantile style of narrative.
Roddy Doyle's book has already dead-legged the assumption that grown-ups are more interesting. To borrow the formula: 'It was sad and brilliant; I liked it.'
added by sneuper | editThe Independent, Mick Imlah (Jun 13, 1993)

» Add other authors (13 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Roddy Doyleprimary authorall editionscalculated
Moppes, Rob vanTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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This book is dedicated to Rory
First words
We were coming down our road. Kevin stopped at a gate and bashed it with a stick. It was Missis Quigley's gate; she was always looking out the window but she never did anything.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0140233903, Paperback)

In Roddy Doyle's Booker Prize-winning novel Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha, an Irish lad named Paddy rampages through the streets of Barrytown with a pack of like-minded hooligans, playing cowboys and Indians, etching their names in wet concrete, and setting fires. Roddy Doyle has captured the sensations and speech patterns of preadolescents with consummate skill, and managed to do so without resorting to sentimentality. Paddy Clarke and his friends are not bad boys; they're just a little bit restless. They're always taking sides, bullying each other, and secretly wishing they didn't have to. All they want is for something--anything--to happen.

Throughout the novel, Paddy teeters on the nervous verge of adolescence. In one scene, Paddy tries to make his little brother's hot water bottle explode, but gives up after stomping on it just one time: "I jumped on Sinbad's bottle. Nothing happened. I didn't do it again. Sometimes when nothing happened it was really getting ready to happen." Paddy Clarke senses that his world is about to change forever--and not necessarily for the better. When he realizes that his parents' marriage is falling apart, Paddy stays up all night listening, half-believing that his vigil will ward off further fighting. It doesn't work, but it is sweet and sad that he believes it might. Paddy's logic may be fuzzy, but his heart is in the right place. --Jill Marquis

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:21:34 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

In this national bestseller and winner of the Booker Prize, Roddy Doyle, author of the "BarrytownTrilogy," takes us to a new level of emotional richness with the story of ten-year-old Padraic Clarke.Witty and poignant--and adored by critics and readers alike--Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha charts thetrumphs, indignities, and bewilderment of Paddy as he tries to make sense of his changing world. Annotation. In this national bestseller and winner of the Booker Prize, Roddy Doyle, author of the "Barrytown Trilogy", takes us to a new level of emotional richness with the story of ten-year-old Padraic Clarke. Witty and poignant--and adored by critics and readers alike--Paddy Clarke Ha Ha Ha charts the trumphs, indignities, and bewilderment of Paddy as he tries to make sense of his changing world.… (more)

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