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A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man and Dubliners

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  5,354 Ratings  ·  108 Reviews
Widely regarded as a great stylist of 20th-century English literature, Joyce deserves the term 'revolutionary'. His literary experiments in form & structure, language & content, signaled the modernist movement & continue to influence writers today. His two earliest, most accessible, successes--A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man & Dubliners--are here br ...more
Kindle Edition
Published (first published 1914)
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Sep 21, 2011 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-class, 2011
It feels pointless to rate a book like A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. Having withstood the test of a century of readership, the book obviously has its merits. Therefore, my trivial 3-star rating is for my personal taste alone, and really not a reflection of the book itself, which is equal parts gorgeous and dull. I am personally not a fan of the stream-of-consciousness style. I'm more in line with the Nabokov school of psychological literature which is built on the complexity of though ...more
May 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction

Edmund Wilson said that “no two persons ever read the same book”, and in my present fascination with revisiting books I read as a young man, unsurprisingly I find I am reading different books. Indeed, if a book, a mere sentence, can change you, then in some true sense your interpretations of the text will always be changing too. In any case, as with music, poetry, or any art, the interpretations and pleasure open slowly and in new ways with every encounter.

Joyce’s novel, in part, can be seen as
Max Nemtsov
Mar 25, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ireland
понял странную вещь. раз в десять лет нужно перечитывать Джойса. это легендарное и героическое издание 82-го года с гордой надписью в конце: Printed in the USSR - и корявой надписью на клапане супера, которая заслуживает приведения полностью: The book is accompanied with the map of Dublin. In the design are used the views of the city (редактор К.Атарова была известно какой редактор). аккомпанирует, это это правда. и виды используются. и стоила она бешеных денег - аж 3 руб. 20 коп. но все равно я ...more
Stephen Hicks
I struggled with these two books. Neither of them held my attention very well and my desire to comprehend the plot by the end was questionable.

Joyce's style made it difficult to keep straight the trajectory of the plot, and I had a hard time differentiating when a scene took place in the main character's head and when it took place in reality. I found the writing very fragmented and jumpy.

I also didn't think Stephen as a character was really brought to life throughout the work. Don't get me wr
Mar 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
I have read Portrait before so this time I started with Dubliners. Dubliners is a collection of short stories centered on what it is like to live in Dublin in the late 19th, early 20th centuries. They are stories of pain and dissatisfaction, and a lot of characters feel lost. They are unhappy in their jobs, marriages, even friendships. Alcohol has a big place in Dubliners. Even though the stories could be considered depressing I enjoyed them. There is an ironic humor in most stories that reflect ...more
Nov 25, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's hard to rate and review one of your favorite books ever. To put into words why you love something that meant so much. I imagine this is what judging your own child is like or something.

Everything from the form of the novel and the progression of language down to the eventual self actualization at the end of the novel is absolutely perfect. Joyce is a fantastic writer, and is quite poetic as well. One of my favorite quotes of the novel :

"His heart danced upon her movements like a cork upo
May 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
So basically this book is amazing, especially A Portrait...This is the most recent book that I have finished and I just love James Joyce's writing style - seriously - that man can do no wrong. The character Stephen really grows (obviously) but unlike other bildungsroman types - it was actually interesting to read about and understand the growth of not just a person, but an artist. The stream of consciousness writing was also just great and it really gives the effect of not only just reading and ...more
Jul 19, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
widely regarded this, canonical that...don't tell me i'm required to give this four or five stars, okay? i mean, i'm glad i've read it and all, but it just wasn't my complete cup of tea. it was hot, steamy and fragrant, but without a touch of sweetness and a soothing caress of cream. i'm just sayin'.
Aug 18, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
OK, I have long wanted to get through at least one book by Joyce so after a false start trying to read Finnegan's Wake (impossible to read) I went for this one. I have so far nearly completed Portrait and feel that it is not very good. It seems that Joyce focuses on pointless details, leaving you trying to figure out where the actual story is. We'll see how Dubliner's goes when I get to that.
Oct 02, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Mamma che fatica!!! Non linguistica, ma proprio di lettura: da italiana sono scappata dalle messe e dalle prediche fiume, dai sensi di colpa e dalle interpretazioni filosofiche sull'esistenza o meno di Dio. E poi me le ritrovo tutte qui. Pfuuu
Dec 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, read-again
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce
One of the best books ever!!

This novel has been listed at number three on the Modern Library Top 100 best novels list, after Ulysses and The Great Gatsby.
It is one of the best books that I had the chance to read and it opens almost all the important subjects: religion, politics, beauty, works of art.
This fabulous novel reveals the Truth about art, beauty, young men, philosophy and more. Much more
And like in many of the other works of James J
Proust Blogger
Sep 09, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Portrait was the first book where I was conscious of prose, after hearing how Joyce is one of the all-time greats at prose, and it was phenomenal. I read this in the late autumn as it was getting colder and into the holiday season, and it was so comfy to huddle under a blanket with some aromatic tea, under a lamp, with my cat snuggling me, and read Portrait before falling asleep. In the last 5-10 minutes before falling asleep each night after reading Portrait for a few hours, I'd knock out one D ...more
Jul 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Много респектирана от високото място на Джеймс Джойс в световната литература не само на двайсети век, посегнах към разказите му "Дъблинчани" с неувереност, тъй като се съмнявах дали е лъжица за моята уста.
Все пак любовта ми към разказа като литературна форма надделя и съм щастлива, че си доставих удоволствието да ги прочета.
Живи истории, великолепно написани, чрез които опознаваш бита, атмосферата и вълненията на ирландците от града в началото на ХХ-ти век.
Специално отбелязвам безценните бележки
Jun 08, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: classics-1900s
I really wanted to like this, but Joyce's writing is just so dry and boring. So much so that, about a year after picking this book up, I've had to just put it down halfway through Dubliners. Portrait had a fairly interesting plot line and would have been at least semi-enjoyable if not for Stephen's bland characterization. As for the Dubliners collection... I'd say there were maybe one or two stories I actually found anything enjoyable about. The rest were about random, boring snapshots of life i ...more
Anna Hiller
Feb 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, modernism
I read this book as a teenager in the '90s, and all I remembered of it was some vague association between sex and religion, and that it had opened my mind to something vaguely "new" that I never could quite define.

Reading it again 20 years later made me see that the bulk of the novel's worth I had overlooked before, mostly because, being a teenager, we only tend to see what most resonates with ourselves at the moment: thus, sex and religion.

Now, teaching it, I recognize Joyce's immense skill in
Haley Marks
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce highly interesting as it follows Stephen Dedalus through his youth. Joyce conveys the struggles of culture, religion and society Stephen faces by relating his life back to other works of art he's read, or been told about. His perspective on his life and the world around him is highly influenced on the artwork thats has currently captured his attention. Stephen travels down some dark paths with his newfound independence and by the age of sixt ...more
Madeline Knight-Dixon
This is on the list of “books I feel societal pressure to read as a person who prides themselves on their literary prowess”. I’ve been avoiding Joyce for a while after reading some of Dubliners, but I finally got over it.

What I learned from reading this book is that as a 21st century reader, I’m used to plot driven stories with serious character development. Lots of action, and prose that fails is good but doesn’t affect me. Early 20th century literature is COMPLETELY DIFFERENT, which makes it
Sep 03, 2007 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
james joyce's dubliners, a collection of short stories regarding the residents of his home-city is at times brilliantly lyrical and melancholy. the collection starts off strong, and ends incredibly strong, but somewhere about 3/4 of the way through, i found myself losing a bit of interest. whether that's due to my own readiness to be reading something else or whether it's due to the stories losing a bit of their personality and focusing a bit more on the political (with reference to figures and ...more
Jun 06, 2013 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Somehow I managed to get out of college without reading any James Joyce. No Brit Joyce.
But so many respected authors cite Joyce among their favorites, so I took the plunge. My problem: college is forty years hence and I was disinclined to delve too deeply into the copious notes that accompanies the text. I should have ...or I should have read it in college where the style and content would have been parsed ad nauseum in class, as this is not really a pleasure read so much as an exercise
Feb 16, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
"He saw clearly, too, his own futile isolation. He had not gone one step nearer the lives he had sought to approach nor bridged the restless shame and rancour that had divided him from mother and brother and sister."
Jul 07, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: do-not-own
This library edition is strictly a text-only edition of "Portrait" and "Dubliners" -- as such, there is no introduction, no footnotes, no slang glossary, no historical notes, etc. And unless one has knowledge of Irish slang around 1900 and the Irish National Movement, much of this collection will go right over the head (as it did for me).

That being said, the writing style of "Portrait" is not one I especially enjoy, and what's more it then seemed to make some rather large leaps in time/thought.
Apr 19, 2008 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: All
Recommended to Tyler by: BBC Big Read list
Two short books in one volume; I preferred Dubliners to Portrait.

Dublin and vicinity is the glue that holds both books together. The stream-of-consciousness in Portrait occasionally distracts, but the novella succeeds in conveying the element of experience and the significance of particular moments, as opposed to particular themes, in a person's development.

Dubliners consists of about a dozen short stories having Dublin as their common theme, and leaving the reader with a well-rounded picture of
When I was reading the Iliad in college, my Lit. professor told us to think of Achilles & Co. as aliens from another planet, it would be the best way to rationalize their often baffling behavior, by acknowledging they have a very different way of thinking. I was reminded of this advice while reading Joyce. It's not necessary, but it helps: 19th-20th century Ireland is, to me, practically another planet.
Portrait of the Artist is a mini-epic coming of age story laced with philosophy- perhaps t
Matt Miles
Oct 21, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's easy to dismiss the ending of A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man as a shrug from an author not knowing how to end a book that started out strongly. That would overlook what Joyce is doing here, though, in a novel about a man struggling between individualism and community, who can find nothing better than mouthfuls of other people's words to express himself. When the reader reaches the end with this understanding in mind, all the frustration,anxiety and hope transfer from Stephen and fo ...more
Jan 04, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Alice by: Michael
Glad I read this. I really enjoyed the Dubliners. Many of the stories focus on people stuck in a situation, held back by family, tradition, social mores, experiencing anger, anxiety, sadness or weariness. The Dead was lovely--beautiful images, lively characters and a believable dark moment, while a soft silent snow falls over all of Ireland.

I liked Portrait less, but still glad I read it. I loved the early chapters during Stephen's childhood and early school days and love the change of writing
I'm very glad that I can finally add James Joyce to my reading experience. I appreciate his skill with creating a wide cast of characters and with helping the reader to step into turn-of-the-century Dublin. Joyce is clearly a master at painting characters with a few strokes that allow us to see their hopes, their fears, and their disappointments with life. That being said, neither of these stories really resonated with me. I enjoyed Dubliners more than A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man, si ...more
Jun 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction, james-joyce
I have been a big fan of James Joyce for quite a while, and I particularly love the B & N edition of these two books. The prefatory "Note on Currencies" is quite helpful, and the edition includes both footnotes and endnotes. I would recommend this to anyone who is picking up Joyce for the first time or reacquainting him/herself with his work after (possibly) a less-than-stellar first impression (as was the case with me). :)

I particularly loved B & N's printing because the pages are spac
John Kang
Nov 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of first books to be published, and it is both a great read and an insight to his early writings. The narration is highly introspective with deep rich emotional tone without too much dramatization. He does so without sacrificing the flow and the readability of the story, rather the slow in-depth monologues construct complex and likable personality.

For those who have yet to read this one, I found myself relating it heavily to Dostoevsky's The Idiot. Although the two are nothing alike,
Martha Davis
Dec 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am preparing to read Ulysses and decided to read this first. It was a hard book for me to read -- not what I would have described as "leisure reading." I had to work at it. I think that I understood some parts better than others. I suspect that this review might be fleshed out a bit more after I get into Joyce a bit more. Ulysses is one of the major reading projects for me at the beginning of this year. I want to "do a good job" with it and wanted to be well prepared.
I probably need to revise
David Rickert
May 06, 2011 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I had already read Portrait, and wanted to check out Dubliners. It was a little like watching a cricket match- enjoyable but, being an American, there were parts of it that I just didn't understand. There was a story about Charles Parnell that I skipped altogether because I knew I was out to sea on that one. Still, there are helpful footnotes in this addition and even some maps - everyone is walking in this book and of course the outward journey represents the inward journey and all of that. Man ...more
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James Joyce, Irish novelist, noted for his experimental use of language in such works as Ulysses (1922) and Finnegans Wake (1939). Joyce's technical innovations in the art of the novel include an extensive use of interior monologue; he used a complex network of symbolic parallels drawn from the mythology, history, and literature, and created a unique language of invented words, puns, and allusions ...more
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