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Smarty Girl: Dublin Savage Audiobook, by Honor Molloy Extended Sample Click for printable size audiobook cover
Author: Honor Molloy Narrator: Aedin Moloney, Honor Molloy, Kevin Holohan, Susan McKeown Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: March 2012 ISBN: 9781442349711
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (14 ratings) (rate this audio book)
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An autobiographical novel set in 1960s Ireland, this irresistible story follows the rise and fall of the O’Feeney family, seen through the eyes of a precocious little girl. More savage than civilized, Noleen is a rare character from a Dublin long forgotten, where Nelson’s Pillar still stands in O’Connell Street—but not for long—and where untamed musicians gather in the O’Feeneys’ kitchen to raise a jar and the roof. Noleen’s father, a successful actor and scoundrel king of the city, does his best to destroy his family, while her mother tries to save it. Noleen schemes to make it through each Dublin day, cadging sweets and growing tough in the midst of chaos. In the end, however, nothing—not even a fierce girl’s powerful imagination—can hold the family together and keep them, safe as geese in the sky, in their home on Tolka Row.

Smarty Girl is a wild child’s journey through a world alternately tender and brutal, humorous and heartbreaking, told in language as musical and vibrant as Dublin itself. 
Honor Molloy’s mother Yvonne is an American theater director who sailed to Ireland in 1953 to study in Trinity College. Her father John was a seventh generation Dubliner and a local legend for his work on stage, in films and on television. Dedicated to capturing and preserving the Dublin vernacular, they worked together for fifteen years producing plays, radio, television shows … and six children. The life they led together—and the reasons that life had to end—provides the inspiration for their Smarty Girl.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “All at once a documentary investigation, a fictionalized rendering of a childhood and a faithful recreation of 1960s Dublin.” 

    Irish Echo

  • “Honor Molloy makes a most memorable debut with this fiercely funny portrait of the artist as a young girl. Along with being a smarty girl, Noleen O’Feeney is irreverent, sarcastic, resilient, engaging, entertaining, and wise beyond her years.” 

    Peter Quinn, American Book Award–winning author of Banished Children of Eve

  • “As the daughter of one of Dublin’s most well know and well-loved actors, Honor Molloy introduces us to the mythical era in Dublin’s history where drama and storytelling took precedence over the often harsh reality of life in 1960s Ireland. In rich, evocative language, Honor’s unique voice lends a child’s authenticity to her family’s tragic yet, ultimately, heartwarming story. Her lyrical writing is worthy of her father’s comedic dramatic style making their memoir both moving and informative. A real piece of Dublin history.” 

    Kate Kerrigan, author of Ellis Island

  • “If James Joyce had been a woman and remembered a more contemporary Dublin childhood, he might be someone like Honor Molloy—Her lyrical prose and earthy recollections sing to Joyce’s rhythm and a beat all her own…A modern classic from a writer with a unique voice—the daughter of a wild Irish drunken actor and his tormented American wife, Honor’s alter ego, Noleen, suffers a brutal childhood worthy of Angela’s Ashes, but survives by her wit and powers of poetic observation.” 

    Laura Shaine Cunningham, author of Sleeping Arrangements

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  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Katie | 6/2/2013

    " An engaging, funny, and moving story with a really striking and strong use of language. "

About the Author

Honor Molloy has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard, and a Pew Fellowship in the Arts. She has told her stories at the Dublin City Library and Archives, the Issue Project Room, Rocky Sullivans of Red Hook, the Public Theatre New Works, and elsewhere.