The Destinies of Darcy Dancer, Gentleman

The Destinies of Darcy Dancer, Gentleman

3.94 (320 ratings by Goodreads)
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Once the squire of the mansion Andromeda Park and now a mere menial, Darcy Dancer embarks upon a series of adventures across the country and in bohemian Dublin in search of his lost youth. A hilariously comic, poignant novel of a remarkable young man's coming of more

Product details

  • Paperback | 416 pages
  • 129.54 x 195.58 x 20.32mm | 272.15g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • New edition
  • 0140049002
  • 9780140049008

Review Text

Mother-bereft and father-despised, young Irish gentleman Darcy Dancer and his picaresque adventures provide the spin to Donleavy's latest top - and fast and round and deft it all most remarkably is. Growing up on the family estate, Andromeda Park, among such family retainers as a Latin-quoting gardener, a ghost-addressing butler, and Miss von B, the hot-and-sour housemistress, Darcy's life resembles one of those what's-wrong-with-this-picture puzzles: he's wrong because everyone else is slightly or greatly crazy. When evil Papa throws Darcy out of the house on account of the young squire's fast-learn in the arms of Miss von B, it's off to Dublin and private school, then escape and return and expulsion once more, all braided with scenes of horsethievery, butlering, a try at the life of a "gentleman chancer and cad" under the tutelage of a master gigolo named Rashers Ronald, and a dip into Irish bohemia. The Donleavy hurtle is as effective as ever - but, recalling the Unexpurgated Code of a couple of years back, there seems to be a distinct, post-Ginger Man thematic purpose. Donleavy pothers and gallops, villainizes and throws in good thick yocks in order to make a very specific meringue: "O God. How one so adores that light loveliness of social froth." So here we have, in place of the pub poet-brawler, J. P. Donleavy finally seen in what's perhaps his snuggest suit: the novelist of manners, good and rude. But still manners. Who'd have thought? (Kirkus Reviews)show more

Rating details

320 ratings
3.94 out of 5 stars
5 28% (89)
4 43% (137)
3 25% (81)
2 4% (13)
1 0% (0)
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