Cover image for Jaywalking with the Irish
Jaywalking with the Irish
Monagan, David.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
Footscray, Vic. ; London : Lonely Planet, [2004]

Physical Description:
239 pages : maps ; 20 cm
Personal Subject:
Subject Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DA978.2 .M65 2004 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



American David Monagan always dreamed of relocating to Ireland, the land of his forebears. In 2001 he did just that, moving his family from Connecticut to the dynamic city of Cork, which has been selected as the International City of Culture of 2005. With humour and candour, Jaywalking with the Irish describes the pleasures and pitfalls of relocating a feisty family to a foreign land. A compelling portrait of modern Ireland, this travel narrative will appeal to anyone who has thought of making a new start somewhere else.

Author Notes

Freelance journalist David Monagan lives in Cork and writes for the Irish Times and Sunday Independent, among others.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

In 2000, American-born journalist Monagan and his wife packed up their Connecticut house and their three children and returned to their roots in Cork, Ireland. "Why not muster one great adventure before we were worn down with age or savaged by school tuition bills?" Monagan had long adored Ireland, having studied in Dublin and occasionally revisited. His passion remains at the surface of his memoir, yet the Ireland of the present often bears little resemblance to the one of his memory. Monagan recounts enrolling his children in school; watching his wife struggle to find work; trying to blend in at the local pub; and navigating Ireland's byzantine bureaucracy with a light touch. Monagan's story, though, grows dark as his family finds itself at the mercy of teenage hoodlums, and one son has difficulty adjusting to school. The story floats from incident to incident until midway through, when Monagan decides he wants to start a regional magazine. The various characters occasionally blur together, and Monagan skates through his final two years in Cork too quickly, insufficiently tying up loose ends. The writing, however, is frequently mellifluous, offering a glimpse into some of Eire's still-existent magic and delving into the slippery questions of identity that confront most travelers. (Oct.) Forecast: A blurb from Frank McCourt could help this most recent addition to Lonely Planet's travel literature series. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

In Monagan's first full-length work, the freelance writer and journalist chronicles his move with his wife and three children from the tiny town of Cornwall, CT, to the Irish city of Cork. They quickly discover that living in Ireland is quite different from being a tourist there. Monagan's descriptions of everyday activities in their new life-from enrolling the children in Irish schools to dealing with quirky European appliances, and the considerable tasks of making friends and contending with anti-American prejudice-provide a unique look at Ireland and its citizens. Monagan is clearly enamored of his adopted home-perhaps a bit too much, as he indulges in description (and quotation marks) to the point of excess, especially in the early chapters. Readers who enjoy Peter Mayle, Frances Mayes, and Adam Gopnik will be drawn to the subject matter but may find that the verbosity detracts from the content. For larger public libraries only.-Rita Simmons, Sterling Heights P.L., MI (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.