'Tis: A Memoir

Version: Unabridged
Author: Frank McCourt
Narrator: Frank McCourt
Genres: Biography & Memoir, Literary
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Audio
Published In: November 2005
# of Units: 12 CDs
Length: 14 hours
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Frank McCourt's glorious childhood memoir, "Angela's Ashes," has been loved and celebrated by readers everywhere. It won the National Book Critics Circle Award, the "Los Angeles Times" Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. Rarely has a book so swiftly found its place on the literary landscape.

And now we have "'Tis," the story of Frank's American journey from impoverished immigrant to brilliant teacher and raconteur. Frank lands in New York at age nineteen and gets a job at the Biltmore Hotel, where he immediately encounters the vivid hierarchies of this "classless country," and then is drafted into the army and is sent to Germany to train dogs and type reports. It is Frank's incomparable voice that renders these experiences spellbinding.

When Frank returns to America in 1953, he works on the docks, always resisting what everyone tells him. He knows that he should be getting an education, and though he left school at fourteen, he talks his way into New York University. There, he falls in love with the quintessential Yankee and tries to live his dream. But it is not until he starts to teach that Frank finds his place in the world.

Reviews (6)

Tis a memoir

Written by soracco on December 1st, 2008

  • Book Rating: 5/5

This book was awesome. The author narrated it with his wonderful Irish accent and it made it really come to life. I would highly recommend this but wished I would have read Angela's Ashes first.

Loved It

Written by Wanda Taylor on May 13th, 2008

  • Book Rating: 5/5

What a delightful book. Frank McCourt never fails to please. Writing simply and wonderfully about a life full of ups and downs. I don't give a "fiddler's fart" who you are this book has to appeal in some aspect of your life.

'Tis: A Memoir

Written by Anonymous from Wakefield, RI on August 31st, 2007

  • Book Rating: 3/5

The book's author/narrator was very entertaining. "Do I detect an Irish brogue? HAR. HAR." I found his childhood stories interesting and the stories of his students funny.

'Tis, a Memoir

Written by Joanne Hagerman on August 28th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 4/5

Frank McCord has a silver tongue. His way with words is poetry, his descriptions are graphic, his first person presentation is hauntingly humble. He depicts the life in Ireland as it spills over into the slums of New York. It is a miracle to see how his desire to go to college in spite of "not having gone to high school", having to work at low paying drudgery jobs, living in horrible little rooms, receiving no encouragement from those who could help, sharing his small income with his mother in Ireland, and living on the dream of possessing the girl from Connecticut --in spite of all those things he persevered and grew into an inspiring literature teacher of reluctant high school students. The guilt he felt for his mother's unhappy life and for his "Irish weakness" (love of the beer) was surely offset by the lovely daughter he and the "girl from Connecticut" shared. His reading the book was also a delight.


Written by Steve Y on January 9th, 2007

  • Book Rating: 5/5

"Tis" is a story that compels you to look forward to the next chapter and the next even though the events are simply life -- albeit a difficult one. McCourt never, however, gives you a chance to really cheer for him. As you become more engrossed in his life, you also grow more frustrated with his decision process and destructive tendancies that seem to exacerbate his woes. No question he had a tough time coming up and making a life for himself. For that he can be commended for making it to this pinnacle of success. His occasional moments of joy at the art of teaching others was his only refuge. And his dedication to the teaching profession is admirable. And, all of it mixed together makes a great story worth the time.

tis a memoir

Written by Colleen Anderson on December 24th, 2006

  • Book Rating: 5/5

Excellant well read,felt as if you were there. You really start to feel for Frank and yet you would have loved to hit him upside his head. This book really got you involved.

Author Details

Author Details

McCourt, Frank

"Frank McCourt was born in 1931 in Brooklyn, New York, to Irish immigrant parents; grew up in Limerick, Ireland, and returned to America in 1949. For thirty years he taught in various New York City high schools, including Stuyvesant, and in city colleges. He lives with his wife, Ellen, in New York City and Connecticut."