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The second novel in Farrell's pentalogy picks up where A World I Never Made left off in the ongoing saga of the O'Neill and O'Flaherty families. Continuing on the theme of poverty's effect on children, we return to scenes of Danny O'Neill's life in Chicago, where the schism between his life in public and his private experiences at home begins to create in him a tension and bewilderment suggestive of the problems he will face in his future.
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"James T. Farrell's five novels about the O'Neill and O'Flaherty families are among the incontestable masterworks of American culture. The series provides a panorama of first and second generation immigrant experience that is indispensable reading for anyone who wishes to understand life in the twentieth-century United States." Alan Wald, professor of English and American culture, University of Michigan "The influence of James Farrell's work has been pervasive and accumulative as generation after generation of American writers continue to explore the urban subjects that Farrell so forcefully defined." Stuart Dybek, author of The Coast of Chicago, I Sailed with Magellan, and other fiction
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