Who on Earth would be crazy enough to hitchhike around the circumference of Ireland with a refrigerator?
Introducing Tony Hawks – the British author and comedian, not the professional skateboarder…
Like all good stories, this one starts with a drunken bet.
Heavily intoxicated, a pub conversation sees Hawks recall the time he visited Ireland and saw a man with a fridge, trying to thumb a lift. Next thing you know, he’s accepted a £100 bet to hitchhike around Ireland with a fridge within one calendar month.
During this month of madness travelling in Ireland, Hawks enters a bachelor festival and meets the poorest king on Earth; the fridge goes surfing and gets christened. Buoyed by a spot on national radio, the “Fridge Man” makes his way around the country, relying completely on the kindness of strangers.
It’s a light-hearted romp through the Irish countryside, full of run-ins with interesting characters – not least of which is Hawks himself, who makes for a charming and humorous travelling companion. At his best, his witty observations will have you laughing out loud.
At his worst, Round Ireland with a Fridge goes off on wild tangents that, while usually humorous, aren’t strictly necessary.
It’s by no means your typical travel novel. Hawks has an eye for wry observations about life in general, not of the Irish countryside.
Fans of Hawks’ other books – Playing the Moldovans at Tennis, A Piano in the Pyrenees, One Hit Wonderland – will know what to expect. Everybody else should anticipate an easy, breezy holiday read that’s big on heart.
Meanwhile, the book has been made into a full-length feature film, starring Hawks, Ed Byrne, Sean Hughes and Josie Lawrence, was released in 2010. If the reviews online are anything to go by, you might be better off sticking with the book instead.
Check out these other great holiday reads: The Beach by Alex Garland and Oh Mexico! Love and Adventure in Mexico City by Lucy Neville.