Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt

Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt

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Angela's Ashes by Frank McCourt

Life can be hard. A hard life though without hope can be devastating. The first 19 years of life for Frank McCourt, the author of the 364 page biography Angela's Ashes, were very difficult and full of change. Originally published in 1996, Angela's Ashes shows the reader the life of a poor Irish Catholic family through the eyes of a young boy. Frank McCourt was born in New York in the 1930's, but his family moved back to Ireland when he was an infant and most of his story is set in Limerick. The biography focuses on the many hardships that took place over the years in Limerick, Ireland including such times as the deaths of three of his younger siblings, or the times when his father would drink away all the money that he had earned just for some drinks at the pub. Throughout the biography, Frank realizes that hardships, sometimes comical, sometimes depressing, are part of life and don't ultimately weaken someone, but in Frank's case made him stronger.
As shown throughout his biography, Frank McCourt's strength and courage was used as a weapon to get him through the poverty in his life. It was very obvious in the story that Frank McCourt wanted to make something out of his life. He wasn't going to make the hardships in life ruin him forever, but more likely life's challenges would make him reach farther and work harder for a better life.

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Because of the lack of money in his family, Frank decided to get a series of jobs that would later give him a sense of accomplishment. One of his main goals was to just keep a roof over his families head and food on the table. His eventual dream was to save enough money to travel back to America where he soon wants to start a "perfect life." After deciding that he wanted to go back to America, Frank started to save his money so that he could indeed return. In the end of the novel, after stealing some money, but saving most of it, Franks finally get his passage to the land of the free and of opportunity. Frank details in his book his motivation to achieve a better life. To him, this life could be found in America. His motivation was the same as millions of other people who immigrated to the United States. This book is an important chronicle of people's motivations to move to America in the mid 1900's. I believe that Frank's motivations to move to America then are the same as many people trying to come to the United States today.
In Angela's Ashes, Frank McCourt is not attempting to prove anything, but it just so happens that his true life experience can teach a thing or two to any person who wants to read it. It proves that through hard work and perseverance anything could be done. Frank and his family, consisting of three deceased siblings, a drunken father, and a miserable mother, live through horrific conditions. No matter what got in his way, Frank was determined to keep his family together and alive. He ended up working more than four jobs just for clothing and shelter. After he made it to America in the end of the novel, he was fulfilled for the time being, but he looked ahead for the future ahead. He wrote the book to give hope to people who were going through rough periods in their life. Angela's Ashes is the perfect novel to prove that hard work, and determination pays off. He strives for the American "dream". Frank McCourt could have easily have given up and ruined his very own life. He could have lived the same terrible life of his Father. He grew from his hardships and the constant change and turmoil of his childhood.
The lives of many Americans are difficult in the present day. Some people might be live out of their cars or have to work two jobs. In the 1930's, people such as Frank McCourt had terrible living conditions without much of the government assistance that is available today. In the 1930's poor people in Ireland had few resources to turn to if faced with extreme hardship. Frank learns a valuable trait throughout his childhood. It is to never give up and to keep on striving for the goal of a better life. The people of the 21st century need to look at this example of poverty and not look at the negative, but rather the positive. People need to understand that life doesn't always have to be bad. It may be rough, but it can be changed. Frank shows people a perfect example of how if life is rough it can be changed. He was dirt poor, had lost three siblings, and had an alcoholic as a father. He didn't let those misfortunes get the best of him. He came to America and made the best out of his life.
Poverty is a bad thing, but it happens to the best of people. Frank McCourt and his family were like many others who were trying to survive long enough until they got a much needed break that would lift their spirits and make everything better. That much needed break did how ever come for the McCourt's. It came when Frank realized that he needed to grow up fast and become a man. He took charge by getting a job, and making sure his family was taken care of. He grew up quite quickly. He made the decision that he would perceiver that he would not fail. That is exactly what it took for a family to live in Ireland. Throughout this novel Frank shows dedication, perseverance and love toward himself and his family. Frank McCourt was known as a fighter, a fighter who believes that life could always be better, not only for himself, but for everyone.
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