Review: Round Ireland With a Fridge

Round Ireland with a Fridge

Tony Hawks

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[xrr rating=3/5 imageset=grenade label=Manliness:][/xrrgroup]



Some books seem to be written purely for the enjoyment of the author. There is of course no problem with that, provided that the reader and the author have a similar sense of humor, and view life through similar lenses.

I personally loved this book. It is a memoir of sorts of Tony Hawk’s journey across Ireland….with a mini fridge. The journey began in a pub with the forming of a drunken bet. The bet, that Hawk could not hitchhike the circumference of Ireland, with a fridge, in one calendar month, was really a joke. However, like many a manly man, Hawk could not resist the lure of the awesome story he could tell if only he made the joke a reality. So he bought a fridge, and a dolly, and he headed out on the open Irish road.

Mostly, this is a story of Hawk’s interactions with different people along the way. He meets innkeepers and radio jockeys. He connects with local musicians. He even meets a king. And at every turn, Hawk’s humor and interesting take on Irish culture allow the reader to both laugh at, and thoroughly enjoy his travels. I have had the blessing of seeing Ireland, and sitting in its pubs, and talking with some of its characters. Perhaps that is why I loved this book so much. Or maybe I just like anything having to do with Ireland.

There were those in iUMBC who hated this book. They found the story hard to follow and Hawk difficult to connect with. I can’t argue with some of their criticism. When it comes to the satirical narrative, Tony Hawk is no Dave Barry. Hawk’s writing comes off more like an old drinking buddy is regaling you with his impossible tales, and less like a work of literature. But in the end, that is what this book is. A great drinking story, which has been turned into a book (and a movie!) Don’t pick this book up because you are looking for the quality or depth of writing a book like Shadow of the Wind or Gilead. And if you want to read about true-life events, I suggest Devil in the White City or Blind Descent.

But if you love Ireland, or British humor, or refrigerators, then this is worth the read.

About john

After an unfortunate run in with a narwhal forced early retirement from his life as a pirate on the Seven Seas, John turned his attention to his second love, Mountain Watching. He is currently fighting to prove that Mount Huascaran has moved 3 feet to the left in the past year, and that one night he saw it crying. When he is not watching mountains, John can be found practicing for the National Caber Toss competition, having staring contests with jaguars, or helping little old ladies cross busy streets.

Currently Reading:
"River of Doubt" by Candace Miller
"The Buried Giant" by Kazuo Ishiguro
"Station Eleven" by Emily St. John Mandel
"S." by Doug Dorst and J.J. Abrams
"Hamilton" by Ron Chernow
"Storm Front" by Jim Butcher
"Lisrael" by Garth Nix


  1. 4 1/2 stars??? You, my friend, must enjoy the drugs.

  2. Well, in his defense, he only gave it 3 1/2 stars. In his opposition, that’s still about 2 stars too many…

  3. 3 1/2 is still way too high. when i heard the premise for the book it made me chuckle and i was excited about reading it (i too like ireland). unfortunately, that initial chuckle was about all this book got from me. beyond the premise, and the fact that he actually did it, there isn’t much that’s actually funny from this book. 1 out of 5.

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