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Chips and Sausage: A Guide to Ireland and Her Wonders by Daniel Zuchowski

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Daniel Zuchowski © 4 December 2017.
Posted in the Magazine ( · Interviews · Non-Fiction ).

Chips and Sausage: A Guide to Ireland and Her Wonders is a tribute to the Irish people, to Ireland’s rich cultural heritage, and to that breathtakingly beautiful and always incredibly green land. The book can also serve as a guide to anyone who would like to learn more about Ireland and the Irish way of life.

As far as I remember, the idea for this book first appeared when I was still writing the previous one – The New Dubliners (published in 2014). Originally, this new book was meant to be a photo book, where each photo would show a different aspect of life in Ireland and Irish culture, and where each photo would have a caption – ideally a humoristic one. But then I realised that with Instagram around and all that, it might not be the most viable idea to have something like that published. I decided to draw simple illustrations in place of photographs.

However, when I later moved to Barcelona and bumped into Gemma Quevedo, an illustrator living in the Catalan capital, I realised that having someone else illustrate the book would take lots of weight off my shoulders – and it would definitely make the book look better than if it were illustrated by my untrained hand.

But even though there was a professional illustrator on board, I still wanted the illustrations to look fairly simple.

I lent Gemma several DVDs with Irish movies, gave her some newspapers and magazines, showed her a number of pictures, and we were ready to have the main characters created. And then it took off. We had one or two illustrations done each week, and Gemma did a great job, with most illustrations being accepted in their first version.

Altogether it took approximately a year to have all illustrations done.

And what is this book really about? It’s about Ireland – the simplest, yet at the same time the most accurate description of what it is about.

The book starts with some geographical background, because it always astonishes me that many people around the world still think Ireland is part of the UK. So we start by sorting that out. And then we move to the more nitty-gritty details, exploring what a typical Irish family looks like, the things that are important to Irish people, the work ethic, or the typical food. But I didn’t want to focus too much on the obvious stuff, to be honest. One of the biggest sections in the book is devoted to Irish kindness and politeness, and another big one is about the typical mistakes tourists make when they visit Ireland. And then, as I’m a linguist and language consultant by profession, there’s also a big section discussing some of the main characteristics of the English language in Ireland.

The book is beautifully published in full colour, and it comes in at nearly 100 pages. But there could easily be 500 pages in it if only it weren’t for the time restrictions when creating the book, and the financial restrictions when printing and publishing it. A book of 500 pages with illustrations in colour would be very expensive, and the publisher wanted for it to be accessible to everyone.

And it will indeed be promoted around the world, since we can already see that it catches the interest of both groups: Irish people, who want to see how they have been portrayed in this book, and the people from other countries, who can learn from the book more about our beautiful land and people.

The book is, in fact, already sitting on the shelves of libraries in places as distant as the library in Dundalk, Centre Culturel Irlandais in Paris, or the National Library of Uganda, to mention only three of the places which I have already visited to promote the book. And many more places are to come.

(c) Daniel Zuchowski

About Chips and Sausage: A Guide to Ireland and Her Wonders:

Chips and Sausage: A Guide to Ireland and Her Wonders is a tribute to the Irish people, to Ireland’s rich cultural heritage, and to that breathtakingly beautiful and always incredibly green land. The book can also serve as a guide to anyone who would like to learn more about Ireland and the Irish way of life.

Order your copy online here.

There is a special, discounted price (25% discount) valid until the official publication date of 6th December 2017.


Daniel Zuchowski is a linguist, English language consultant and trainer, teacher trainer and founder of the English Talks event. His first book, The New Dubliners, was a collection of short stories about people like himself – foreign nationals living in Dublin. His second book, Chips and Sausage: A Guide to Ireland and Her Wonders, is now available. You can find Daniel on Twitter: @DanielZuchowsky
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