This site uses cookies to deliver our services, improve performance, for analytics, and (if not signed in) for advertising. By using LibraryThing you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your use of the site and services is subject to these policies and terms.
Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The Mammy by Brendan O'Carroll

The Mammy (1994)

by Brendan O'Carroll

Other authors: See the other authors section.

Series: Agnes Browne (1)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
5942525,169 (3.96)46

Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 46 mentions

English (23)  Italian (2)  All languages (25)
Showing 1-5 of 23 (next | show all)
This was on my dad's bookshelf. It was sentimental and bumped along joyfully and roughly, with grief and good feelings in a struggling Irish family. Miss my da. ( )
  Wattsian | Jul 13, 2019 |
This book is very open and canning. I loved the seemingly real life story that made me feel as if I were living right with Agnes, her family and friends in Dublin. I would highly recommend this book to anyone. It's lighthearted, comical and touching. You will feel all the feels with this book. ( )
  jennifer1977 | Jun 26, 2018 |
Uneven, but hilarious and moving. ( )
  Siubhan | Feb 28, 2018 |
Funny, though I'm sure it was funnier for me having recently seen the two series of O'Carroll's latest incarnation of Agnes Browne (Mrs. Browne's Boys). His voice and quick wit enhanced a story most Americans wouldn't get. ( )
  Razinha | May 23, 2017 |
Such a sweet, down-to-earth story. Agnes Browne is newly widowed, a working class Irish mom of 7, just trying to get through her days in the 1960s Dublin, with dignity, and hope and humour. She is best friend to Marion, supportive mom to her eldest teenage son, and Number One Defender to her young daughter in a bullying incident at school that had me laughing out loud. She is at once an innocent but also life-savvy. This deceivingly short novel encompasses the gritty but poignant and tender moments of life. It is the first of a trilogy of books about the Browne family. I look forward to the next 2! ( )
  jessibud2 | Feb 6, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 23 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Brendan O'Carrollprimary authorall editionscalculated
Cenciarelli, GajaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
'Brendan, just be yourself and the rest will come.'
Doreen O'Carroll
This book is dedicated to
Gerry Browne
a man I care about, and one who cares about me
First words
LIKE ALL GOVERNMENT BUILDINGS, the interior of the public waiting room in the Department of Social Welfare was drab and uninviting.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language
Canonical DDC/MDS

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English


Book description
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0452281032, Paperback)

It seems like there's no end to Irish tales depicting unhappy, squalid childhoods in crowded, working-class flats. While Brendan O'Carroll's The Mammy maintains many elements of the traditional genre--the saintly, overworked mother, the Catholic family with an enormous posse of children and any number of abusive alcoholic fathers--it's a somewhat cheerier vision of Irish youth than we've come to expect. The mammy in question, one Agnes Browne, has enough spunk to look after her brood of seven, run a fruit stand at the local open market, gossip viciously with her best friend Marion, and still daydream about dancing with a famous singer.

This is in large part due to the fact that her husband, Redser, who falls squarely into the above-mentioned category, has died--thanks to a careless driver--just before the novel's opening pages. Our first glimpse of the pragmatic, lovable Agnes comes as she's waiting in the social services office on the afternoon of his death, determined not to lose a penny of her widow's benefits as a result of dilly-dallying. She doesn't even have the necessary death certificate yet, but that's not nearly enough to slow down Agnes Brown: "No, love, he's definitely dead. Definitely," she says to the clerk, then, turning to her friend for backup, "Isn't he, Marion?" Marion, made from the same tough stock, agrees solemnly: "Absolutely. I know him years, and I've never seen him look so bad. Dead, definitely dead!" The scene is emblematic: Agnes knows how to fight, and she isn't afraid to do it. Her deadpan humor becomes a hallmark.

As for her children, they get into the usual trouble--fights, girl problems, and the like. But there are also some charming, unexpected episodes in the book. For example, Agnes's oldest child meets a Jewish man and performs small tasks for him on the Sabbath, which eventually leads to greater goods. Among other things, Mark learns about the Jewish faith, new knowledge he accepts with bemusement and some of his mother's innocence and good humor. Upon hearing that the man doesn't celebrate Christmas, he exclaims: "Will yeh go on outta that! How can yeh not believe in something when it's real?"

The book is not without its share of tragedy, but Agnes takes it all with aplomb. She's clearly the glue that binds her pack of youngsters together: "The rule in the Browne family was: 'You hit one, you hit seven.' Since March twenty-ninth and Redser's demise, little had changed in the Browne house. If anything, the house was less tense." The Mammy is a slight book--it tells the simple, fairly conventional tale of a single Irish family--but it makes up for its gaps with humanity, in the same way Agnes Browne makes up for what she and her children lack. --Melanie Rehak

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:22:07 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Agnes Browne faces the hardships and rewards of raising seven children on her own in a 1960s working-class Dublin neighborhood.

» see all 2 descriptions

Quick Links

Popular covers


Average: (3.96)
0.5 2
1 1
1.5 2
2 1
2.5 2
3 31
3.5 9
4 64
4.5 4
5 47

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


About | Contact | Privacy/Terms | Help/FAQs | Blog | Store | APIs | TinyCat | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | Common Knowledge | 136,471,752 books! | Top bar: Always visible