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Books About Ireland

This St. Patrick Day, read about Ireland and Irish Americans.

February 24, 2022



Ancient Ireland

Ancient Ireland
From Prehistory to the Middle Ages

Jacqueline O’Brien, Peter Harbison

This richly illustrated tour of the Irish countryside focuses on the wedge tombs, medieval round towers, and Tudor manor houses that still dot the countryside, reminders of an ancient history.

Angela's ashes

Angela’s Ashes
A Memoir

Frank McCourt

The author recounts his childhood in Depression-era Brooklyn as the child of Irish immigrants who decide to return to worse poverty in Ireland when his infant sister dies.

As for Ireland

As for Ireland

M. Mallace

While other travel guides focus on accommodations, dining, and cursory descriptions of well-known sites, the experienced traveler thirsts for a more comprehensive and historical view of this fascinating country.

Contemporary Irish knits

Contemporary Irish Knits

Carol Feller

Presents knitting projects inspired by the author’s Irish heritage that feature Aran stitching, and offers profiles of some of Ireland’s hand dyers and yarn mills.

The Family Tree Irish genealogy guide

The Family Tree Irish Genealogy Guide
How to Trace Your Ancestors in Ireland

Claire Santry

Follow your family tree back to its roots on the Emerald Isle! Santry walks you through the exciting journey of researching your Irish heritage. You’ll learn how to identify your immigrant ancestor, and locate key genealogical resources that will breathelife into your family tree.

Fodor's 2020 essential Ireland

Fodor’s 2020 Essential Ireland

Paul Clements, Alannah Hopkin, Anto Howard, Vic O’Sullivan

Each full-color book highlights the best of the best of Ireland, including must-see attractions, hotels for every budget, restaurants for a range of tastes, special features, travel tips, insider perspectives, photos, maps and more.

Frommer's Dublin day by day

Frommer’s Dublin Day by Day

Jack Jewers

The guide highlights the must-see places and offers knowledgeable opinion on where to stay, eat and shop.

Frommer's easyguide to Ireland

Frommer’s Easyguide to Ireland

Jack Jewers

Provides information on accommodations, restaurants, shopping, sights, events, and activities in the country.

How the Irish saved civilization

How the Irish Saved Civilization
The Untold Story of Ireland’s Heroic Role From the Fall of Rome to the Rise of Medieval Europe

Thomas Cahill

Revealing the pivotal role played by St. Patrick and Ireland in the development of Western culture and history, a narrative describes Europe’s evolution from the classical age of Rome to the medieval era.

Illustrated guide to Ireland

Illustrated Guide to Ireland

Editors of Reader’s Digest

Thoroughly updated with the latest sites and annual events, a complete guide to Ireland features a discussion of local attractions, folklore, customs, history, and natural history, plus information on market days, local events, outdoor activities, contact numbers, and more, all highlighted by more than seven hundred color photographs and illustrations.

The immortal Irishman

The Immortal Irishman
The Irish Revolutionary Who Became an American Hero

Timothy Egan

Places the improbable life of Great Famine orator and revolutionary hero Thomas Francis Meagher against a backdrop of Irish-American history, detailing his leadership during Irish uprisings, service with the Irish Brigade and achievements as the territorial governor of Montana.


A History

Thomas Bartlett

Based on wide reading, clearly structured, elegantly expressed, spiced with a sardonic wit, steering a skillful course through the treacherous ideological rapids of Irish historiography, Bartlett’s Ireland deserves to become a classic. J. Joseph Lee, NYU, author of Ireland, 1912-1985

Irish Boston

Irish Boston
A Lively Look at Boston’s Colorful Irish Past

Michael Quinlin

From famine to fame, poverty to power, the 300-year journey of the Boston Irish features a cast of memorable characters who shaped the city’s illustrious history. Runaway servants and war heroes, poets and priests, and Olympic champions and a US president all form a lively narrative of one immigrant group overcoming the odds in pursuit of the American Dream.


Irish food & folklore

Irish Food & Folklore

Clare Connery

Traditional Irish recipes have evolved over many centuries. Many are known and loved internationally while others still remain obscure to those outside the Emerald Isle, however, all of them posses a richness and heartiness. Here are presented 100 authentic recipes representing the best of Ireland.

The Irish way

The Irish Way
Becoming American in the Multiethnic City

James R. Barrett

In the newest volume in the award-winning Penguin History of American Life series, James R. Barrett chronicles how a new urban American identity was forged in the streets, saloons, churches, and workplaces of the American city. This process of “Americanization from the bottom up” was deeply shaped, Barrett argues, by the Irish.

Jaywalking with the Irish

Jaywalking With the Irish

David Monagan

David Monagan has always dreamed of relocating to Ireland, the land of his forebears. With humour and candour, he describes the pleasures and pitfalls, challenges and frustrations of moving a feisty family to a foreign land. Jaywalking with the Irish is an honest, penetrating and often hilarious portrait of a contemporary Ireland that is so often portrayed through the wistful lens of cliches that no longer apply.

Kaffe Fassett's quilts in Ireland

Kaffe Fassett’s Quilts in Ireland
20 Designs for Patchwork and Quilting

Kaffe Fassett

Showcases twenty quilts inspired by the colors of the countryside and landmarks of Ireland, featuring detailed step-by-step instructions and diagrams for each quilt.

The King and the Catholics

The King and the Catholics
England, Ireland, and the Fight for Religious Freedom, 1780-1829

Antonia Fraser

Traces how the Gordon Riots of 1780 began a fifty-year legal struggle to secure key protections for Catholics in the United Kingdom after two centuries of legal discrimination.

Making the Irish American

Making the Irish American
History and Heritage of the Irish in the United States

J.J. Lee, Marion R. Casey

Explores the history of the Irish in America, offering an overview of Irish history, immigration to the United States, and the transition of the Irish from the working class to all levels of society.

Malachy McCourt's history of Ireland

Malachy Mccourt’s History of Ireland

Malachy McCourt

Explores the Ireland’s history, from the early Celtic settlements through British occupation and struggles for independence, highlighting prominent heroes, artists, poets, and politicians.

My father left me Ireland

My Father Left Me Ireland
An American Son’s Search for Home

Michael Brendan Dougherty

The senior editor at National Review and son of an absent Irishman describes his urge for a sense of cultural belonging after his daughter was born and chronicles his quest to study Gaelic and bury himself in Irish history.

A new Ireland

A New Ireland
How Europe’s Most Conservative Country Became Its Most Liberal

Niall O’Dowd

A story of modern revolution in Ireland told by the founder of IrishCentral, Irish America Magazine, and the Irish Voice newspaper.

On an Irish island

On an Irish Island
The Lost World of the Great Blasket

Robert Kanigel

On an Irish Island tells the remarkable story of a remote outpost nearly untouched by time in the first half of the twentieth century, and of the adventurous men and women who visited and were inspired by it.

The Oxford illustrated history of Ireland

The Oxford Illustrated History of Ireland

R.F. Foster

An account of Ireland that explores the land of leprechauns from its prehistoric communities to its present political unrest, addressing seldom-discussed issues of its social inequality, Victorian morals, and more.

Paddy whacked

Paddy Whacked
The Untold Story of the Irish-American Gangster

T.J. English

A history of Irish-American organized crime from the nineteenth century to the present traces the influence of such gangs as the Whyos and Gophers over early elections, the modern-day activities of New York’s Westies and Whitey Bulger’s South Boston mob, and more.

Rick Steves best of Ireland

Rick Steves Best of Ireland

Rick Steves, Pat O’Connor

Hit Ireland’s can’t-miss sights, bites, and history in two weeks or less with Rick Steves Best of Ireland!

Rogues and redeemers

Rogues and Redeemers
When Politics Was King in Irish Boston

Gerard O’Neill

Presents a behind-the-scenes history of Irish power and politics in 20th-century Boston.

Say nothing

Say Nothing
A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland

Patrick Radden

Documents the notorious abduction and murder of I.R.A. Troubles victim Jean McConville in 1972 Belfast, exploring how the case reflected the brutal conflicts of Northern Ireland and their ongoing repercussions.

Time pieces

Time Pieces
A Dublin Memoir

John Banville

Presents a memoir of the author’s life near Dublin, a city that inspired his imagination and literary life and served as a backdrop for the dissatisfactions of adult years shaped by Dublin’s cultural, political, architectural, and social history.

To school through the fields

To School Through the Fields
An Irish Country Childhood

Alice Taylor

A childhood memoir captures a lost world, a time of cutting hay and preparing meals, tending to animals and visiting with friends in the Irish countryside, and delightful characters of a vanished era.

Traditional crafts of Ireland

Traditional Crafts of Ireland

David Shaw-Smith

The traditional crafts of the Irish people come to life in a richly illustrated study of the country’s acclaimed woodcarvers, metalworkers, weavers, and renowned glassblowers.

The traveller's guide to sacred Ireland

The Traveller’s Guide to Sacred Ireland
A Guide to the Sacred Places of Ireland, Her Legends, Folklore and People

Cary Meehan

A guidebook written for the traveller who wishes to experience the spirit of this ancient land. There are simple wells and stones still regarded as places of pilgrimage by local people; holy mountains, lakes and rivers created by giants and protected by fairies, enigmatic temples from pre-Celtic time, tombs, round towers, high crosses, and more. Some are intentionally important like the complex and magnificent tombs of the Boyne Valley; others sit alone on wild and windswept hillsides waiting to be discovered.

A traveller's history of Ireland

A Traveller’s History of Ireland

Peter Neville

A Traveller’s History of Ireland offers a chronological outline of the country up to the present day as well as an invaluable introduction to a land of poets, saints, illustrious soldiers and inspiring and persistent rebels.

A Treasury of Irish myth, legend, and folklore

A Treasury of Irish Myth, Legend, and Folklore

Claire Booss

Introduce yourself to the noble heroes and magical creatures of Irish mythology. Includes the two definitive works on the subject by the giants of the Irish Renaissance.

Voyage of mercy

Voyage of Mercy
The USS Jamestown, the Irish Famine, and the Remarkable Story of America’s First Humanitarian Mission

Stephen Puleo

A historian tells the extraordinary story of Ireland’s great potato famine in the late 1840s, the Jamestown voyage and the commitment of thousands of ordinary Americans to offer relief to Ireland, establishing the US as the leader in international aid.

World Heritage sites of Great Britain and Ireland

World Heritage Sites of Great Britain and Ireland
An Illustrated Guide to All 27 World Heritage Sites

Victoria Huxley, Geoffrey Smith

There are 27 World Heritage Sites designated by UNESCO in the United Kingdom and Ireland and this authoritative guidebook describes them and their reasons for inclusion on the list. Fully illustrated in color with accompanying maps, this book will help visitors to find the sites and plan their visit.




A Novel of the Irish Free State

Morgan Llywelyn

Continuing the chronicle of the Irish fight for independence as introduced in 1916 and 1921, idealistic Ursula rebels against the repressive Catholic state when she bears a child out of wedlock and runs her family farm in a neutral part of the country.

A catered St. Patrick's Day

A Catered St. Patrick’s Day
A Mystery With Recipes

Isis Crawford

When Mike Sweeney is found floating in a vat of green beer and the nephew of one of their best customers is accused of the crime, Bernie and Libby Simmons, the owners of A Little Taste of Heaven, must find the real killer before the luck o’ the Irish runs out.

A dance in Donegal

A Dance in Donegal

Jennifer Deibel

To fulfill her mother’s dying wish, Moira Doherty moves from Boston to the rolling green hills of 1921 Ireland to teach in a village school. She doesn’t expect to fall in love—or to uncover a scandalous family reputation her mother left behind years ago.

The daughters of Ireland

The Daughters of Ireland

Santa Montefiore

In 1925, with the war over, Celia Deverill seeks to restore her ancestral home, while her cousin Kitty must make a heartbreaking decision, and Bridie, the daughter of a former castle cook, plots revenge against a woman who wronged her in the past.

Dead in Dublin

Dead in Dublin

Catie Murphy

When one of her clients—a beloved restaurant critic—drops dead supposedly from spoiled seafood, Megan Malone, a driver for the Leprechaun Limo Service, decides to look into the fishy death much to the chagrin of a handsome Garda.

Death on the green

Death on the Green

Catie Murphy

A driver for Dublin’s Leprechaun Limousine Service, American Army veteran Megan Malone must clear the name of a world-class champion golfer, and her newest client, when he is accused of murdering his rival.

The elephant of Belfast

The Elephant of Belfast

S. Kirk Walsh

Inspired by a largely forgotten chapter of World War II, and highlighting the indelible, singular bond between mankind and animals during times of crisis, this moving story follows 21-year-old zookeeper Hettie Quin as she is compelled to protect an orphaned elephant through the German blitz of Belfast.

Good eggs

Good Eggs

Rebecca Hardiman

Three generations of a boisterous Irish family are upended by a matriarch’s shoplifting activities and an upbeat American home aide whose initial support catapults the family into the worst crisis they have ever faced.

The heart's invisible furies

The Heart’s Invisible Furies

John Boyne

Adopted by a well-to-do if eccentric Dublin couple who remind him that he is not a real member of their family, Cyril embarks on a journey to find himself and where he came from, discovering his identity, a home, a country, and much more throughout a long lifetime.



Frank Delaney

An epic tale-within-a-tale based on the history of Ireland finds a traditional wandering Storyteller revealing his life experiences while forging a poignant new relationship in the home of an eight-year-old boy.

An Irish country doctor

An Irish Country Doctor

Patrick Taylor

A recent medical school graduate, Barry Laverty is delighted by the opportunity to join a small rural practice in the beautiful hills of Ballybucklebo, Northern Ireland, until he meets his superior, Dr. Fingal Flahertie O’Reilly, a cantankerous older physician who has his own way of doing things.

An Irish hostage

An Irish Hostage

Charles Todd

British World War I nurse Bess Crawford travels to Ireland for her best friend’s wedding and unravels a dark, deceptive plot when the bridegroom goes missing in the latest addition to the series following A Cruel Deception.

Irish meadows

Irish Meadows

Susan Anne Mason

Pressured by their Irish immigrant father to marry well and save their family horse farm, Brianna, a girl who longs to go to college, and Colleen, who dreams of romance, find their ambitions complicated by two men from humble backgrounds.

Irish parade murder

Irish Parade Murder

Leslie Meier

When a brash new reporter is implicated in the murder of a corrections officer, Lucy Stone uncovers a bizarre mystery while interviewing a stranger whose revelations change everything for Lucy’s family.

The Irish princess

The Irish Princess

Karen Harper

Elizabeth “Gera” Fitzgerald, born into the first family of Ireland, takes refuge in England, navigates alliances, and nurtures her secret plot for revenge after Henry VIII imprisons her father and destroys her family.

The irishman's daughter

The Irishman’s Daughter

V.S. Alexander

When a devastating potato blight hits the Irish countryside, peasant Briana Walsh must guide her family through one of the nation’s darkest hours while finding love with Rory Caulfield, a hard-working farmer seeking vengeance against the callous gentry.



Roddy Doyle

Attending his father’s deathbed in hospice, a man reconnects with a drinking buddy from his Dublin youth while reflecting on a long-ago love, his wife’s role in upending his life and the truth about his departure from Ireland.

The matchmaker of Kenmare

The Matchmaker of Kenmare
A Novel of Ireland

Frank Delaney

Forging a powerful friendship with the enigmatic Miss Begley at the height of World War II, Ben McCarthy slowly recovers from the loss of his wife and supports Miss Begley’s romance with a high-ranking U.S. officer who tests her love by sending her on a dangerous mission in enemy territory.

Murder in an Irish cottage

Murder in an Irish Cottage

Carlene O’Connor

The O’sullivan clan is back in the fifth installment of Carlene O’Connor’s USA Today bestselling Irish Village Mystery Series! In a remote ‘and superstitious’ village in County Cork, Ireland, Garda Siobhán O’Sullivan must solve a murder where the prime suspects are fairies . . .

Murder in Galway

Murder in Galway

Carlene O’Connor

To honor her mother’s final request, Tara Meehan arrives in Galway, Ireland, where she becomes immediately drawn into her mother and uncle’s troubled past when a dead body is found in her missing uncle’s cottage.

The princes of Ireland

The Princes of Ireland
The Dublin Saga

Edward Rutherfurd

A fictional account of the history of Ireland recreates such events as the mission of Saint Patrick, the Viking invasion, and the trickery of Henry II that led to England’s establishment in Ireland.

The return journey

The Return Journey

Maeve Binchy

The beloved, critically acclaimed Dublin storyteller, the author of Circle of Friends, presents a slim volume of colorful, original tales of sadness and joy, infused with warmth and humor, packaged for gift giving

The secret of the Irish castle

The Secret of the Irish Castle

Santa Montefiore

Leaving America for Dublin, Martha falls impossibly in love with a man from her birth mother’s community; while Bridie struggles with her new husband’s wandering eye, and Kitty reevaluates a past love.

Small things like these

Small Things Like These

Claire Keegan

In a small Irish town in 1985, coal merchant and family man, Bill Furlong, while delivering an order to the local convent, makes a discovery that forces him to confront both his past and the complicit silences of a town controlled by the church.

St. Patrick's Day murder

St. Patrick’s Day Murder
A Lucy Stone Mystery

Leslie Meier

In the town of Tinker’s Cove, Maine, the luck of the Irish runs out for barkeep Old Dan Malone when his body is found floating in the town’s icy harbor, forcing Lucy Stone, the Pennysaver newspaper’s intrepid reporter, to solve this murder before the St. Patrick’s Day celebrations begin.