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Analyse part of the first chapter of 'Angela's ashes' written by Frank McCourt.

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ANALYSIS OF A CHAPTER I am going to analyse part of the first chapter of Angela's ashes written by Frank McCourt the story it based on his childhood. The first words of the first chapter are, "My father and mother should have stayed in New York where they met and married and where I was born." The rest of the book follows his life from New York to Ireland. He then goes on to tell the reader. When he was four they moved to Ireland with his 3 brothers, he did have a sister but she had died. In this chapter it doesn't tell the reader how his sister died. Then in the next paragraph he starts to look back to his childhood and tells the reader how horrible it was by writing "when I look back on my childhood I wonder how I survived at all. It was of course a miserable childhood" just this sentence alone makes the reader feel sorry for this little boy. ...read more.


The reader at this point is most probably thinking "this family has come from New York to this, it doesn't sound a very healthy place to be". Although at this point the reader doesn't know what their circumstances were in New York and why they left, so all the reader can think is why go there. Frank starts to describe how you would cure the illness of catarrh he states "to ease the catarrh you boiled onions in milk blackened with pepper; for the congested passages you made a paste of boiled flour and nettles, wrapped it in rag and slapped it, sizzling, on the chest. He doesn't write about people going to see doctors, so all the reader can think is that this is a very poor place and they couldn't afford anything like that, only to make a home made remedy. The next paragraph frank goes on to tell the reader that from October to April, limerick is a very damp place "clothes never dried" presumably he had to wear damp clothes that weren't dried properly. ...read more.


He doesn't give much description of him or his family but he does give a brief out line of the place and the people. The beginning of the chapter gets the reader ready for a sad story but parts make you chuckle even though it is upsetting. At the end of the chapter Frank McCourt used a little humour we find time and time again in his words. He can tell us a story of something dreadfully sad but cap it off with a little humour making it easier for us to face the ugliness head on. From the first chapter you know its going to be a sad story but you never know whether at the end of each chapter if he is going to have us laughing or crying? The book is a true story of frank McCourts life. He is writing in a real voice from the viewpoint of a child told in the words a child would use. People want honesty. Real stuff. And that is what he has done. Donna Sales 29/04/07 1 ...read more.

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