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The Woman Who Walked Into Doors

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The name-calling continued, along with slamming of doors, smashing of plates, and nasty, drunken shouting in my face. I was “Miserable”, “Moody”, a “Tramp and a whore”, a “Prostitute”. A nothing. Paula Spencer is the narrator and unlikely heroine of Roddy Doyle’s fifth novel, The Woman Who Walked Into Doors. The mother of four children, she lives in a working-class suburb of Dublin. She is also a battered wife and an alcoholic. Paula’s husband, Charlo, has been killed while escaping the scene of a crime he committed. Though Paula threw him out a couple of years ago, she recalls their early times together, filled with joy and lust. She remembers her rebellious adolescence, boys she dated and fantasized about, family outings, and summers at the sea, and she reflects on the events in her life that brought her to where she is today.


Roddy Doyle's novel, from which this play is adapted, plummets the reader into the lively and resilient imagination of Paula Spencer, a working-class Dublin woman who stays with her husband Charlo for 17 years even though he beats her. There is no outside, moralising voice in the book, and it is left to the reader to ask the question: why doesn't she leave him? Well, I grew up in a house filled with children, and there were always books around. I remember reading a lot of Enid Blighton —I think she’s written something like a hundred books, and I think my sisters had a lot of them. I also read a lot of books about football, for some reason. Later, in high school, I remember reading John Irving and really liking him. And my friends and I passed around books that we liked. I remember reading Flann O’Brien, who’s really quite funny.Paula una donna come tante , cresciuta in una famiglia con il padre padrone , ma non sono mancati i momenti felici , almeno così lei ricorda ..

The Woman Who Walked Into Doors Summary | SuperSummary

His language took my breath away. I couldn’t believe that this guy, my guy, my best friend and my wingman could call me such a thing. Except that he did. And then he kept on doing it. Things got worse.Martin Doyle, "Roddy Doyle adds his Two Pints worth to marriage equality Yes vote campaign", The Irish Times, 1 May 2015.

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