Frank McCourt is a young Irish boy who faced tragedies throughout his life. Being the common American mistake what most would call a bastard, born out of marriage. His life begins with trouble, with parents that are both Irish. His mother Angela from the Limerick of Ireland, and his father Malachy from the North of Ireland. Just like America back in that time the north and south does not get along. Malachy and Angela had seven children, Frank being the oldest.
Since Frank was the first born he had to provide for his family at a young age by stealing, because Malachy would take his wages and drink leaving no money for the family to buy food or milk for the babies. This caused Frank’s little sister Margaret to pass away. Frank’s mother isolated herself out of grief leaving her four boys Frank, Malachy Jr. , Oliver, and Eugene to care for themselves. Until Frank’s aunts Delia and Philomena sees the conditions they are living in and calls Angela’s mother for money to send the family back to Ireland.
Frank moved to Ireland when he was five, and Ireland was no better than America. The living conditions was worse with rainy days and people having an illness that was called the consumption. The Church was their only safe place, but even then a very judgmental place. Children were not allow to ask questions and throughout Frank’s life he was pushed away from the church. So much that his mother told him never to ask the church for anything again ,because they had closed the door in his face so many times.
The family’s first couple of days in Ireland they were not able to receive money for the service that Frank’s father did in the war, because his records were not on file and he compared the money he was given for his troubles to a pint and was kicked out of IRAs’ office. That night Frank and his family had to sleep inside of a police station. During their over night stay, some of the Guards wives felt bad that the McCourt’s had no where to live and no money. So they put their money together to help the family get to the Limerick where Angela’s mother stayed.
From the very first time that Angela’s mother met Frank she did not like him. It is to be said that he had an odd Northern manner like his father, but his little brother Malachy Jr. named after his dad, had the looks of his mother and caught the eye of every woman. Angela’s mother did not have room in her house for Angela and her family, so she paid two weeks rent for a house in the lane, one of the poorest parts of the Limerick. The McCourt’s did not stay there long because the house was infested with fleas. So Malachy Sr. ot a job and they moved into a different lane and Frank started school. Leamy’s National School was no place where any child wanted to be. The teachers were mean and found any reason to hit the students. Although the teachers were horrible to the students, Frank did exceptionally well in school. Even when Frank had gotten sick with the typhoid and spent too many days away from school. His teacher was going to hold him back to the fifth class, which Frank did not want to be in because Malachy Jr. was in that class and Frank was older.
Frank wrote a composition about if Jesus was raised in the Limerick. His paper was so amazing that he was moved up to the six class. As Frank went on in school he grew a fondness of books, I believe it was his way of not thinking of his dad leaving to go to England to work for money and only sending money to the family once and drinking the rest of it away. Frank liked to go to the library and read about saints. Until he got older and started thinking about sex and was reading a provocative book and was kicked out of the library.
As Frank got older and stopped going to school his Uncle Pa Keating stepped in as his dad and encouraged him not to be like every other Limerick Ireland and follow his dreams to go to America. Frank took his advice and instead of becoming a permanent messenger boy he got a job writing threaten letters to people who owed Mrs. Brigid Finucane money and also delivering the protestant newspapers. Frank was keeping the money he earned from being a temporary messenger boy , debt writer, and delivering papers in the imericks’ local post office. As a messenger boy Frank meets Theresa Carmody, a young seventeen year old girl who has consumption, and is also Franks first intimate partner of the opposite sex. Not to long after Frank and Theresa had their moments of intimacy: Theresa dies and Frank believes she will go to hell because of their sins. To insure that Theresa’s soul is not in hell Frank prays to every saint and confess. To follow his dreams to go to America Frank had to learn to budget his money.
Instead of stuffing himself on food he would either eat little to nothing or take fruit and cows milk from the farm. Frank did not see why anyone should have to go starving when there is so much free food out in the open. When Frank starts to work for Mrs. Brigid Finucane he feels bad that he is causing families that he know are suffering more problems with debts. After a while he starts to enjoy it, because the more threaten it sounds, the more Frank was paid. When Frank starts his new job at Easons, a company that imports and distributes Protestant newspapers from Northern Ireland. He had gotten in trouble the first day ,because some of the boys who worked there took time during work to look in the English magazine with women in swim suits and “be one with themselves”. That day they blamed Frank for the slow process at work saying he was a slow learner. This job helped Frank come into a lot of money, when an issues of birth control in a magazine is unleashed . Frank and the boys at work gathered some of the papers and sold them off to curious people of the Limerick. Frank was able to go to America after Mrs. Brigid Finucane dies.
Frank steals some of the money she had on the table and in her purse, and peruses on a boat back to America. On the boat to American Frank meets a priest and tells him about his journey and about Theresa. The priest insures him that she is in a better place and that all of his sins are forgiven. On the boat, Frank and the priest, was invited on a private boat where Frank met a girl named Frieda. That night was Frank first day in New York, and he gets intimate with a girl whom he did not know. Frank and the priest agrees that America is a great place.