The Bump on Brannigan's Head
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By Myles Connolly | Introduction and Notes by Stephen Mirarchi, Ph.D.
The Bump on Brannigan’s Head, published twenty-two years after Connolly’s best-selling Mr. Blue, tells of the transformation of Whittiersville. The brash, boisterous Tom Brannigan is anything but a likely candidate for sainthood. But a bump on the head from his garage door brings Brannigan to an encounter with one of the key challenges of the Gospel: love your enemies. Brannigan finds that he must approach ordinary interactions with a new heart—treating his noisy neighbors with kindness, forgiving those who hurt him, and preaching the Gospel to his fellow townspeople. Stephen Mirarchi, as he did with Connolly’s Mr. Blue and Dan England and the Noonday Devil, adeptly explains the novel’s literary structure, discusses its critical reception, and describes its place in the canon of great literature.
“In the Brannigan home on Orchard Street, the sound of Brannigan’s voice raised in argument could be heard, but, Brannigan being Brannigan, there was no reason to consider this anything unusual…”
Myles Connolly (1897–1964) was a Hollywood writer and producer with more than forty film credits to his name and several others uncredited. He published a collection of short stories and four novels.
Stephen Mirarchi, Ph.D., is Assistant Professor of English at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. He is editor of three Myles Connolly novels in the Cluny Classics series and has published numerous articles in academic journals, popular magazines, and newspapers.