A Closer Look: Ulysses (The Folio Society)

admin July 5, 2017 Comments Off on A Closer Look: Ulysses (The Folio Society)
A Closer Look: Ulysses (The Folio Society)


By James Joyce

Introduced by Danis Rose, John O’Hanlon and Stacey Herbert

Illustrated by John Vernon Lord

• Bound in cloth, printed and blocked with a design by the artist | • Blocked leather spine label • Set in Dante | • 752 pages | • Frontispiece and 18 colour illustrations | • Printed endpapers | • Blocked slipcase | • 11½˝ x 8˝

First published in its entirety in February 1922, James Joyce’s epic, modernist tome is widely considered to be amongst the greatest and most innovative works of the 20th century, but although many people have attempted to tackle its challenging 700+ pages, considerably few seem to have actually reached the holy grail that is its final page – without skipping of course!

Ulysses by James Joyce, The Folio Society 2017

Returning to that original 1922 edition of the novel for what is arguably the most authoritative version available to date, editors and Joyce scholars, Danis Rose (principal editor of Folio’s 2014 edition of Finnegans Wake) and John O’Hanlon (Rose’s long-time collaborator), have done a quite brilliant job, brining the full weight of their expertise to what proves a definitive 95th anniversary edition of the novel, exclusively available from The Folio Society.

Set entirely in Dublin over the course of just one ordinary day (Thursday 16 June, 1904), and divided into a series of eighteen episodes, Joyce’s sprawling, three-part epic famously chronicles the adventures of his modern day Ulysses, Leopold Bloom, establishing a number of distinct parallels with Homer’s epic poem, The Odyssey (Ulysses being the Latinised name of Homer’s hero Odysseus), though unfolding on a significantly more intimate and mundane scale.

Ulysses remains an utterly singular work, largely thanks to its seemingly chaotic structure, experimental prose and the stream-of-consciousness technique Joyce employs, though with Folio’s new edition, the labyrinthine narrative feels much more fluid and readable than previous editions, notably introducing (perhaps controversially) punctuation into the text (which certainly helps a great deal).

John Vernon Lord’s mostly black and white, pen-and-ink line illustrations are an excellent accompaniment to the text, enhancing the visual representation of both location and character, and giving us a deeper and closer understanding of the words.

The Folio Society’s beautifully presented new edition is quite simply stunning, and, along with Finnegans Wake, proves an essential addition to the collection of any good Joyce aficionado.

As Rose and O’Hanlon state in their introduction, it is the first edition of the text that accurately embodies the Ulysses that Joyce always wanted to be published. What more is there to say? Buy it now!

For more information on the release, and to purchase your copy, please Click Here.

Illustrations by John Vernon Lord

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