Synopses & Reviews
The boom-to-bust story of Ireland by the acclaimed author of Jaywalking with the Irish
A recent economic miracle, Ireland nation has now suffered a catastrophic collapse. Yet mirth, soulfulness, and eccentricity still reign. In Ireland Unhinged, Connecticut-born David Monagan explores his adopted country through the eyes of a passionate transplant. Moving first to Cork City, the author and his family embrace Ireland's unpredictable nature. One day Monagan's serving as a bartender in a cathedral; the next he's attending a beard convention. Before you know it, he's befriended famous writers like the lonely J. P. Donleavy, author of the iconic The Ginger Man, and an actor in Grade Z films.
Still seeking the essence of Irish identity, Monagan moves his family to a country cottage on the banks of a majestic river, where he finds a timeless village universe. Hitting the road, the author encounters a white witch who still talks to fairies, eco-warriors, bog diggers, farmers, monks, an IRA killer, and brazen new Irish entrepreneurs galore. "What is Ireland? Has it lost its soul?" Monagan keeps asking as he roams from Cork to Dublin, Donegal and Belfast. His answers are singular, loving, searing, and often laugh-out-loud funny.
"I loved Ireland Unhinged
so much I almost ate it. It's hilarious. It's sad. It's loving. David Monagan vividly reveals how slugs destroyed his garden, how crooked bankers and corrupt politicians destroyed Ireland's economy and reduced the Celtic Tiger to a throw rug, and how spirituality fled in the face of rampant materialism. You don't have to be Irish to dive into this grand book." Malachy McCourt, author of A Monk Swimming
Ireland Unhinged: Encounters with a Wildly Changing Country looks back at the changes that the economic boon wreaked on the Irish countryside, and what the future holds for the country. Connecticut-born David Monagan explores his adopted country through the eyes of a passionate transplant. “What is Ireland? Has it lost its soul?” Monagan keeps asking as he roams from Cork to Dublin, Donegal, and Belfast. His answers are loving, searing, and often laugh-out-loud funny.
About the Author
has cast a discerning eye upon modern Ireland since moving there in 2000, with his writings about the country featured in Forbes Life, The Sunday Times
(London), The Guardian, Irish Times, Irish Independent, Irish Examiner, The Dubliner,
the Los Angeles Times, Miami Herald, San Francisco Chronicle,
and many other publications.
His 2004 title Jaywalking with the Irish received scores of rave reviews from Ireland to Boston, Japan to Munich. In promoting the work, Monagan was featured in numerous print and broadcast interviews and public appearances in the United States, Germany, and Ireland, with television appearances in the latter country. He has a long list of media contacts from these experiences.
Monagan has an impressive journalistic background, with further credits including The New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, Discover Magazine, Omni, Psychology Today, Reader's Digest, American Health, Hartford Courant, Medical Tribune, Science Digest, Technology Today, Litchfield County Times, and many other publications.
Monagan knows his Ireland. What makes his perspective on the country unique is that the author was a student at Trinity College, Dublin, and then widely toured what was a vastly different land, so that an older Ireland kept company with him as the Celtic Tiger roared. He and his wife Jamie, head of marketing at the Cork Opera House (formerly employed by National Public Television in New York), and who has helped promote Monagan's earlier works, visited Ireland at length throughout the 1980s and 1990s, so have considerable earlier reference point.
When not tending his gardens or fishing in Ballyduff, Monagan resides in Cork City with his wife, daughter, and two sons, now approaching university age.