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Ireland: Dublin and the Emerald Glens - Books & Movies
RECOMMENDED READING 
  • Concise History Of Ireland by Maire O'Brien, Conor Cruise O'Brien. Four events in particular, Yeats' "four deep, tragic notes", ring through Irish history: the Catholic revolt against Elizabeth; the battle of the Boyne, which established the Protestant Ascendancy; the impact of the French Revolution; and the fall from power of Charles Stewart Parnell, which turned Ireland away from peaceful solutions to its ills.
  • How the Irish Saved Civilization by Thomas Cahill. The untold story of Ireland's role in maintaining Western culture while the Dark Ages settled on Europe. As Cahill delightfully illustrates, so much of the liveliness we associate with medieval culture has its roots in Ireland. When the seeds of culture were replanted on the European continent, it was from Ireland that they were germinated. 
  • Wild Decembers by Edna O'Brien. Edna O'Brien's masterly new novel charts the quick and critical demise of relations between Joseph Brennan and Mick Bugler - "the warring sons of warring sons" - in the countryside of Western Ireland. A classic drama ensues, involving the full range of bonds and betrayals and leavened by the human comedy of which Edna O'Brien rarely loses sight.
  • Ireland: A Novel by Frank Delaney. In the winter of 1951, a storyteller arrives at the home of nine-year-old Ronan O'Mara in the Irish countryside. For three wonderful evenings, the old gentleman enthralls his assembled local audience with narratives of Ireland's enduring accomplishments. These nights change young Ronan forever, setting him on a years-long pursuit of the glorious tales that are no less than the saga of this tenacious and extraordinary isle.
  • For the Love of Ireland: A Literary Companion for Readers and Travelers (ed. Susan Cahill). For the Love of Ireland offers the jewels of Irish literature. For the literary pilgrim to arrive at the pub where Joyce set a scene or the mountain where Yeats imagined a myth is to uncover fresh meaning in the works of writers in love with their native landscape. 
  • The Celts: A Very Short Introduction by Barry Cunliffe. The Celts have long been a subject of enormous fascination, speculation, and misunderstanding. Barry Cunliffe seeks to reveal this fascinating people for the first time, exploring subjects such as trade, migration, and the evolution of Celtic traditions. Along the way, he exposes the way in which society's needs have shaped our visions of the Celts, and examines such colorful characters as St. Patrick, Cu Chulainn, and Boudica.
  • Confessions of a Pagan Nun: A Novel by Kate Horsley. Cloistered in a stone cell at the monastery of Saint Brigit, Gwynneve, a sixth-century Irish nun. secretly records the memories of her Pagan youth, interrupting her assigned task of transcribing Augustine and Patrick.  As the monastery is rent by vague and fantastic accusations, Gwynneve's words become the one force that can save her from annihilation.
  • Irish Fairy And Folk Tales by W.B. Yeats. Gathered by the renowned Irish poet, playwright, and essayist William Butler Yeats, the sixty-five tales and poems in this delightful collection uniquely capture the rich heritage of the Celtic imagination. Filled with legends of village ghosts, fairies, demons, witches, priests, and saints, these stories evoke both tender pathos and lighthearted mirth and embody what Yeats describes as "the very voice of the people, the very pulse of life."
  • Dubliners by James Joyce. Declared by their author to be a chapter in the moral history of Ireland, this collection of 15 tales offers vivid, tightly focused observations of the lives of Dublin's poorer classes. A fine and accessible introduction to the work of one of the 20th century's most influential writers, it includes a masterpiece of the short-story genre, "The Dead."
  • Mysterious World: Ireland by Ian Middleton, Douglas Elwell. More than just a listing of names, numbers, and dates, Mysterious World takes readers behind the scenes to help them understand the history and the mystery of this sacred isle. The book delves deep into Ireland's legendary past, looking especially at the mysterious people who invaded Ireland time and time again in search of their destinies.
  • Connemara: A Little Gaelic Kingdom by Tim Robinson. This book is the triumphant conclusion to T. Robinson's extraordinary Connemara trilogy.  Robinson writes about the people, places and history of south Connemara - one of Ireland's last Gaelic-speaking enclaves - with the encyclopaedic knowledge of a cartographer and the grace of a born writer. 
  • Modern Ireland: A Very Short Introduction by Senia Paseta. A remarkably concise history in the well-regarded series, touching on the major aspects of Irish history, politics, and society in the late 19th and 20th century.  The book is arranged both thematically and chronologically; each of the eight chapters takes as its focus a particular period, and each period is discussed within the context of one or more questions which informed and shaped that particular period.
  • Angela's Ashes: A Memoir by Frank McCourt. Recounting scenes from his childhood in New York City and Limerick, Ireland, McCourt paints a brutal yet poignant picture of his early days when there was rarely enough food on the table. As McCourt approaches adolescence, he discovers conflicting dreams and realities in a powerful and heart-rending testament to the resiliency and determination of youth.
     
RECOMMENDED VIEWING 
  • The Quiet Man (1952). Blarney and bliss, mixed in equal proportions. Wayne plays an American boxer who returns to the Emerald Isle, his native land. What he finds there is a fiery prospective spouse and a country greener than any Ireland seen before or since. The Quiet Man isn't the real Ireland, but as a delicious never-never land of Ford's imagination, it will do very nicely.
  • Leap Year (2010) Anna Brady plans to travel to Dublin, Ireland to propose to her boyfriend Jeremy on February 29, leap day, because, according to Irish tradition, a man who receives a marriage proposal on a leap day must accept it.
  • P.S. I Love You (2007) A young widow discovers that her late husband has left her 10 messages intended to help ease her pain and start a new life.
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Why travel with other women?
Many women do not have families or compatible friends who wish to travel. When going on a main-stream tour, women often find that most activities are geared towards couples and quite often they feel left out. Singles' tours are not always what women are looking for. If you do not have a traveling companion, there is also the issue of the expensive "single supplement", sometimes as much as 50 or even 100 percent of the tour cost. By going on women-only tours, women can easily avoid paying for the single supplement by sharing a room with another woman traveler.
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