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Ireland | [Frank Delaney]

Ireland

One evening in 1951, an itinerant storyteller arrives unannounced at a house in the Irish countryside. In exchange for a bed and a warm meal, he invites his hosts and their neighbors to join him by the wintry fireside, and begins to tell formative stories of Ireland's history. Ronan, a 9-year-old boy, grows so entranced by the storytelling that, when the old man leaves abruptly under mysterious circumstances, the boy devotes himself to finding him again.
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Publisher's Summary

One evening in 1951, an itinerant storyteller arrives unannounced at a house in the Irish countryside. In exchange for a bed and a warm meal, he invites his hosts and their neighbors to join him by the wintry fireside, and begins to tell formative stories of Ireland's history. Ronan, a 9-year-old boy, grows so entranced by the storytelling that, when the old man leaves abruptly under mysterious circumstances, the boy devotes himself to finding him again.

Ronan's search for the Storyteller becomes both a journey of self-discovery, long unspoken family secrets, and an immersion into the sometimes conflicting histories of his native land.

A sweeping novel of huge ambition, Ireland is the beautifully told story of a remarkable nation. It rings with the truth of a writer passionate about his country and in full command of his craft.

©2005 Frank Delaney; (P)2005 HarperCollins Publishers, Inc.

What the Critics Say

"A sprawling, riveting read....Rich and satisfying." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.1 (668 )
5 star
 (327)
4 star
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3 star
 (109)
2 star
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1 star
 (17)
Overall
4.3 (206 )
5 star
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3 star
 (29)
2 star
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1 star
 (3)
Story
4.4 (208 )
5 star
 (134)
4 star
 (39)
3 star
 (24)
2 star
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1 star
 (4)
Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Katya Sherman Oaks, CA, United States 08-18-05
    Katya Sherman Oaks, CA, United States 08-18-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    29
    2
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Too much of a fairy tale"

    This book sounded too much like a fairy tale. I was very much looking towards 20 hrs. of great audio to entertain me on the road but the pace of the book was so slow that I quit after investing over 10 hrs. hoping it'll get better.

    2 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kevin Pasadena, CA, United States 06-06-05
    Kevin Pasadena, CA, United States 06-06-05 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    7
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    172
    7
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "tiresome"

    the premise of this novel was very promising, and even the first few chapters were engaging. the main character (the boy)never proved to be that interesting, though, and the one that is the most interesting (the storyteller), we don't hear enough of. Interest gave way to tedium. By the end, i was hoping for the end.

    1 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pamela MARYSVILLE, CA, United States 03-18-13
    Pamela MARYSVILLE, CA, United States 03-18-13 Member Since 2010
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    2
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Misleading!"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    nothing


    Would you ever listen to anything by Frank Delaney again?

    never


    What do you think the narrator could have done better?

    narration was ok


    What character would you cut from Ireland?

    the author


    Any additional comments?

    I thought it was about Irish folk stories but it was really about the author's apparent hate of the Catholic Church, his low opinion of people of faith, and his sexual fantacies. Little did I know that incest would be a central theme in a book about Irish culture. I was mislead and offended. I quit half way through.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DMHVetSurveyor Western Wisconsin 04-23-06
    DMHVetSurveyor Western Wisconsin 04-23-06 Member Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    568
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    225
    94
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    35
    0
    Overall
    "What a story"

    This is a great book for history lovers, people just interested in Ireland or just lovers of a great story. If the author chooses not to write any more, he can make a great living at being a reader. But lets all just hope and pray he keeps writing as well. You'll love this one. After around listening to over 70 audio books this is definitely in my top 5. Enjoy!! I will be listening to this one again soon.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Julie Montgomery Village, MD, USA 08-11-05
    Julie Montgomery Village, MD, USA 08-11-05 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    31
    2
    Overall
    "Almost as good as a trip to Ireland!"

    I can't stop listening to this wonderful audiobook! I know I will be sorry when it is over...

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Katharine Woodstock, NH, USA 05-18-05
    Katharine Woodstock, NH, USA 05-18-05 Member Since 2008
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    219
    2
    Overall
    "Delightful way to learn history of Ireland"

    The author is a wonderful storyteller. It may be a long story, but it held my interest with every word.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alec 05-17-05
    Alec 05-17-05 Member Since 2013
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    301
    4
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Good historical fiction"

    This was a well written book on Ireland and it's history, I loved it.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. McMillen Danville, IL USA 04-23-05
    J. McMillen Danville, IL USA 04-23-05 Listener Since 2001
    HELPFUL VOTES
    41
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    132
    33
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "A pleasant book"

    This is such a pleasant book. At one time I worked with an Irishman who has since left this world, Bill would have loved this book. It is stories within a story

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Martha Seattle, WA, USA 04-11-05
    Martha Seattle, WA, USA 04-11-05
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    3
    1
    Overall
    "slow beginning, great book"

    The first story told by the storyteller is a rather boring geological history. Stick with the book, it gets better.

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lucile Salem, OR, United States 04-20-05
    Lucile Salem, OR, United States 04-20-05
    HELPFUL VOTES
    12
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    70
    6
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    0
    0
    Overall
    "Boring"

    All the other reviews make this book sound entrancing, but, in fact, it is boring. It loosely strings together stories, not in any particular order or of any particular interest from Irish history or folklore. The uniting principle is contrived (a young man looks for a story teller). Although the book is well written and well read, the material is tiresome.

    2 of 10 people found this review helpful
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