Marilyn Monroe stocked about 400 books on her shelves, and was once married to playwright Arthur Miller. A quick scan of the titles in her collection reveals that the image Monroe projected in her private life hardly squared with the theatrical character that made her famous.
Dubliners by James Joyce was one of the books Marilyn had in her private library.
Although James Joyce began these stories of Dublin life in 1904, when he was 22, and had completed them by the end of 1907, they remained unpublished until 1914 — victims of Edwardian squeamishness. Their vivid, tightly focused observations of the life of Dublin's poorer classes, their unconventional themes, coarse language, and mention of actual people and places made publishers of the day reluctant to undertake sponsorship.
Today, however, the stories are admired for their intense and masterly dissection of "dear dirty Dublin," and for the economy and grace with which Joyce invested this youthful fiction.