Press Release: A Confederacy of Dunces
John Kennedy Toole
Preface by Bill Bailey
Illustrated by Jonny Hannah
Foreword by Walker Percy
‘A corker, an epic comedy, a rumbling, roaring avalanche of a book.’
Arguably the funniest winner of the Pulitzer Prize, A Confederacy of Dunces is one of the 20th-century’s great cult novels, with a following to match. Rollicking, sweaty, over-allusive and repulsively witty, it sits alongside Swift and Twain as a comic masterpiece. Unpublished during Toole’s lifetime, this astonishing literary accomplishment would have remained a manuscript if not for the persistence of the author’s mother following his untimely death.
The spectacular new edition from The Folio Society is the first illustrated edition of this publishing phenomenon. The riotous narrative is accompanied by a dazzling fanfare of illustrations from BAFTA-awardwinning animator and illustrator Jonny Hannah who has included a tribute to Ignatius’ semi-successful attempt at gainful employment – one of Paradise Vendors’ hot dogs is emblazoned on the striking endpapers.
Despite approaching many publishers, Toole failed to generate interest in his novel and he eventually set it aside and found work as a teacher. However, aged just thirty-two, the troubled young writer took his own life and it became his mother’s mission to pursue her son’s dream on his behalf.
As comedian Bill Bailey writes in the preface for this edition: ‘His mother’s determination to get her son’s book into print was heroic’. Bailey is one of many comedians and creatives who love the nonconformist character and the world he inhabits, citing the book as a favourite read. ‘Ignatius J. Reilly is one of fiction’s most brilliant creations, one which leaps right off the page and lives large in your imagination forever more.’
Bound in printed textured paper. Set in Maxime Standard. 352 pages. 8 colour illustrations and 7 black and white tailpieces. Printed endpapers. Printed slipcase. 9½˝ x 6¼˝
UK £39.95 US $64.95 Can $75.00 Aus $79.95
For media enquiries please contact
UK & ROW Ken Hooper, Cherish PR
020 3626 0282,
US & Canada Cathleen P. Williamson