Frank McCourt dies

“Angela’s Ashes” author was 78


Frank McCourt, the Irish-American school teacher who became a best-selling author in his 60s with the book Angela’s Ashes, died at the age of 78. Angela’s Ashes, about his childhood in Ireland, won the Pulitzer Prize, sold widely, and was made into a film. Two more books followed about his own life, plus the children’s book Angela and the Baby Jesus. McCourt was often seen as the living embodiment of the American Dream, having risen from poverty to wealth, and from obscurity to fame. In 2000, he told Laura T. Ryan of the Syracuse Post-Standard that his post-retirement success was proof that anyone’s life can be good reading: “The only big difference between me and millions is that I wrote this best seller. And I think their lives are best sellers…which is a pretty good line. I just created that line: ‘My life is a best seller.’ ” McCourt was admitted to a New York hospice to be treated for melanoma, and according to his brother Malachy, “he was doing fine but he got meningitis two weeks ago and it turned the whole thing topsy-turvy.”

New York Times

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Frank McCourt dies

  1. R.I.P. Frank; "Angela's Ashes" was my first reading of an autobiography and of 'adult' material. I was only fifteen when I first read it, and have read it three times since. It remains one of my favorite reads, and thus had a hand in shaping the person I am today. You will be surely missed.

  2. That totally sucks. Just after it first came out, I read Angela's Ashes on my lunch breaks at the crap factory job I was working at the time. Then, when 'Tis came out, I was so excited I ran out and bought a used copy the book, even though we had a new baby at the time and little money. It was worth every penny. That man had a gift. Sure, they were memoirs and to be certain some of the details were changed in the telling, but he had the Irish gift of storytelling and I, for one, will miss him.