The Last Hurrah: A Novel

Paperback | March 22, 2016

byEdwin O'connorIntroduction byJack Beatty

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“We’re living in a sensitive age, Cuke, and I’m not altogether sure you’re fully attuned to it.” So says Irish-American politician Frank Skeffington—a cynical, corrupt 1950s mayor, and also an old-school gentleman who looks after the constituents of his New England city and enjoys their unwavering loyalty in return. But in our age of dynasties, mercurial social sensitivities, and politicians making love to the camera, Skeffington might as well be talking to us.

Not quite a roman á clef of notorious Boston mayor James Michael Curley, The Last Hurrah tells the story of Skeffington’s final campaign as witnessed through the eyes of his nephew, who learns a great deal about politics as he follows his uncle to fundraisers, wakes, and into smoke-filled rooms, ultimately coming—almost against his will—to admire the man. Adapted into a 1958 film starring Spencer Tracy and directed by John Ford (and which Curley tried to keep from being made), Edwin O’Connor’s opus reveals politics as it really is, and big cities as they really were. An expansive, humorous novel offering deep insight into the Irish-American experience and the ever-changing nature of the political machine, The Last Hurrah reveals political truths still true today: what the cameras capture is just the smiling face of the sometimes sordid business of giving the people what they want.

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“We’re living in a sensitive age, Cuke, and I’m not altogether sure you’re fully attuned to it.” So says Irish-American politician Frank Skeffington—a cynical, corrupt 1950s mayor, and also an old-school gentleman who looks after the constituents of his New England city and enjoys their unwavering loyalty in return. But in our age of d...

Edwin O’Connor (1918-68) was an American radio personality, journalist, and novelist. Among his many books are The Edge of Sadness, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for fiction, and I Was Dancing.

other books by Edwin O'connor

The Edge Of Sadness
The Edge Of Sadness

Paperback|Oct 1 2005

$18.09 online$20.25list price(save 10%)
Format:PaperbackDimensions:392 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 1.1 inPublished:March 22, 2016Publisher:University of Chicago PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:022632141X

ISBN - 13:9780226321417

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“The absolutely winning production of this, the best reprint of 2016 includes a rollicking Introduction by Jack Beatty, an understated, smile-inducing new cover design, and of course the main event, O’Connor’s utterly masterful dark comedy of American politics, which is as funny and insightful today as it was the year it was written.”