In a book group reading James Joyce's Dubliners, Matthew Crain almost jumps across a table and slugs a guy about Gretta Conroy's galoshes in "The Dead." Determined to have the last word, he writes his way through Dubliners from beginning to end, "finishing the sentences my enemy interrupted." Reading Dubliners is a snappy, thoughtful, literary, detailed and often obsessive study of Joyce's inherently absorbing stories. How obsessive? Know anybody else that writes a love letter to a paragraph? Reading Dubliners is not only a convincing study of Dubliners the book. It is also a self-portrait of Crain himself and a testimony to the lessons on storytelling he has found in Joyce's early fiction. Crain’s essays are 290 pages of bluntness and passion, offered casually, and they show readers that they don't need to read an encyclopedia before they read James Joyce. 2014 marks the centennial anniversary of the publication of James Joyce's Dubliners, and a great way to celebrate is with Matthew Crain's Reading Dubliners.