The Beastly Beatitudes of Balthazar B by J. P. Donleavy

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Synopsis

The New York Times Book Review called The Beastly Beatitudes of Balthazar B, J. P. Donleavy's hilarious, bittersweet tale of a lost young man's existential odyssey, "a triumphant piece of writing, achieved with that total authority, total mastery which shows that a fine writer is fully extended...." In the years before and after World War II, Balthazar B is the world's last shy, elegant young man. Born to riches in Paris and raised by his governess, Balthazar is shipped off to a British boarding school, where he meets the noble but naughty Beefy. The duo matriculate to Trinity College, Dublin, where Balthazar reads zoology and Beefy prepares for holy orders, all the while sharing amorous adventures high and low, until their university careers come to an abrupt and decidedly unholy end. Written with trademark bravado and a healthy dose of sincerity, The Beastly Beatitudes of Balthazar B is vintage Donleavy.
 

About J. P. Donleavy

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James Patrick Donleavy, 1926 - James (aka, Mike) Donleavy was born in New York on April 23, 1926 to Irish immigrants. He served in the Navy during WWII and afterwards, attended Trinity College in Dublin. He began as a painter to gain entry into the London gallery scene but he was told that he would have to be famous to have his work shown, which he decided to do, but as a writer. Donleavy's first novel was "The Ginger Man," which took years to complete and even more to get published because of the explicit sex for that time. It was finally published by Maurice Girodias, who also published a series of pornographic fiction called the Traveler's Companion Series. Donleavy tried to save his credibility as an author by trying to arrange for the book to be published in the UK and agreeing to alter the work to avert censorship. Donleavy is also an accomplished playwright as well as the scriptwriter, narrator and lead of the film/video J.P. Donleavy's Ireland. Donleavy's received several awards which include Most Promising Playwright Award, 1960, for Fairy Tales of New York; Brandeis Creative Arts Award, 1961&62, for the plays The Ginger Man and Fairy Tales of New York; Citation from National Institute & American Academy of Arts and Letters, 1975; Worldfest Houston Gold Award, 1992, for the film J.P. Donleavy's Ireland and the Cine Golden Eagle Award, 1993, for writer and narrator of the film J.P. Donleavy's Ireland. He was listed in the Modern Library's Best 100 Novels of the Century for "The Ginger Man," which also was ranked #7 in Best-selling Books of All Time in Ireland.
 
Published December 1, 2007 by Grove Press. 420 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

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Ah, the fine Irish tongue, the splendiferous language, the honeyed sexology.

Nov 19 1968 | Read Full Review of The Beastly Beatitudes of Bal...

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