The Various Lives of Keats and Chapman, Including The Brother

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“Along with Joyce and Beckett, [Flann O’Brien] constitutes our trinity of great Irish writers. And who is funnier?” – Edna O’Brien The cream of Flann O’Brien’s comic tour-de-force, the Keats and Chapman stories began in O’Brien’s column in the Irish Times. He called them “studies in literary pathology” — monstrously tall tales that explore the very limits of the shaggy dog story. As one critic wrote, they will accumulate the fantasy to the point of sadism, and then cash home with the flat, desolating pun. “The Brother” is another of O’Brien’s funniest creations. He is the archetypal Dublin man — an authority on every one of mankind’s ills, from the common cold to the court case. Forget the experts, The Brother knows best. “The best comic writer I can think of.” – S. J. Perelman

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