Currently Reading: A Confederacy Of Dunces


I’m about 200 pages into this book and those pages were a struggle. I’ve wanted to quit a few times, but once I start a book, I have this weird rule that I must finish it. I’ve invested time into it and if I quit now it would be time wasted. John Kennedy Toole’s biography is what attracted me to the book. I was intrigued that it was published after Toole killed himself because he couldn’t get published. That Walker Percy decided to publish it intrigued me further. It won a Pulitzer. It’s set in New Orleans, one of my favorite cities. I was certain it would instantly become one of my favorite books. Not the case. Ignatius J. Reilly kind of pisses me off and there isn’t another character in there that I like. I question why I’m spending so much time with them. It is funny. I’ll give it that The hot dog vending scene had me laughing. But I can’t find any way to connect with Reilly. I don’t empathize with him. I’ve got 200 pages left and maybe I’ll “get it” when I finish. Maybe the greatness of this book becomes clear at the end. Has anyone else had this response while reading A Confederacy of Dunces?

7 thoughts on “Currently Reading: A Confederacy Of Dunces

      1. I feel bad for the dude. Maybe it’s because I know the author’s story prior to reading this and I’m projecting him into the character. Something I fear people will do to me with my characters.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. I adored this book and feel terrible you aren’t having the same experience. I found the satire so amusing and caught myself laughing out loud throughout. I do believe you have to be in the right frame of mind to appreciate it. It’s not a shitty romantic comedy you can breeze through in any mood. Maybe put it down and revisit it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m afraid that I’m holding back laughing of the ridiculousness of it. I feel it’s almost like making fun of the drunk guy. While funny, there is more sadness than humor.


      1. Oh it’s certainly sad. He’s an awfully pathetic character, but the satire is well done and I feel as though the author would want us to chuckle our way through the read – it was so cleverly written.

        Liked by 1 person

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