I received this book in exchange for an honest review from the author.
I checked my e-mails this morning as soon as I woke up and found Kerry Dwyer's Ramblings in Ireland in my inbox. I started reading it and just forgot to go to work. So, here I am, writing the review that I promised (this very morning) to post within the next two weeks.
It tells the tale of one particular walking trip and the memories and musings it inspired.
Exploring the West of Ireland is a time for meditation, spiritual reflection and strengthening the bonds of life. More practically the ability to read a map might have proved helpful. The tourist office in Ireland has all their paths clearly marked. You can’t go wrong if you follow that little yellow man. Or can you?
As British ex-patriate Kerry Dwyer leads Bertrand, her trusting French husband, astray once more, they reminisce and reflect upon accents and accidents, family and friends, love and what it means to be alive. Bertrand doesn’t mind getting lost – he loves Kerry all the more for going off the beaten track.
This is a book about ramblings in Ireland. Walk with Kerry and Bertrand and follow where your thoughts lead you.
My thoughts: I love the way the book is written. The author recreates the atmosphere, talks about the language, the people, the sounds and even the smell of Ireland. The detailed imagery brings the scenes to life! Having been on the road a lot lately, I have come to realize that travelling, for me, is more than just checking ten places off the "To-Visit List". Every place makes me think of different things, every new experience conjures up older memories I didn't even know were there and it is the most exciting feeling! The author has captured this perfectly and I was glad the book was not just about rambling in Ireland; they surely have travel guides for that! Instead of just dumping loads of information about the country on us, the author manages to make the most ordinary things seem fascinating and can weave stories out of thin air! The actual facts about Ireland and the descriptions of the countryside are interspersed with snippets of old conversations, funny anecdotes and obscure memories. I particularly enjoyed reading about the author's experiences teaching English as a foreign language, about her childhood difficulties with accents, about French, English and Irish food and the running gag about her navigational expertise.
I found the book thoroughly engaging, right from from the very first page, when the writer tells us what to expect from the book. The narration has an ease or a flow to it. The book is very interesting, touching and fairly amusing all at once, and I was chuckling to myself throughout. It seems from the style of writing and the pure randomness of the anecdotes that the author wrote the book entirely for herself and that makes the book very genuine. And, being the kind of person who finds it very hard to write without going off on tangents myself, it was easy to relate to her!
I loved the book. I haven't written "what I didn't like", the way I usually do, because there was nothing I didn't like! I would recommend this book to everyone. In fact, please, go buy your copy right now right here!