Don't Wake Me At Doyles (2005) At 70, Maura Murphy — an Irish housewife with nine children — was diagnosed with lung cancer. She subsequently lost a lung, left her husband… 2005-03-02 Nonfiction St. Martin's Press
Book Review

Don't Wake Me At Doyles (2005)

EW's GRADE
B+

Details Release Date: Mar 02, 2005; Writer: Maura Murphy; Genre: Nonfiction; Publisher: St. Martin's Press

At 70, Maura Murphy — an Irish housewife with nine children — was diagnosed with lung cancer. She subsequently lost a lung, left her husband of 50 years, and decided to write a memoir. The result is Don't Wake Me at Doyle's, an artless but harrowing record of grinding poverty, nonstop pregnancy, addictions, and a bitterly unhappy marriage. (On sex: ''It was no more enjoyable than collecting a bucket of water from the pump or doing a load of washing.'') According to Murphy, her husband was a feckless alcoholic who beat her, cheated on her, and left bottles of pee lying around the bedroom in the wake of his frequent benders. Though this rambling book lacks polish, Murphy manages to convey a lifetime of rancor and misery in this depressing and brutally effective autobiography.

Originally posted Feb 07, 2005 Published in issue #806 Feb 11, 2005 Order article reprints