Going to the Well for Water: The Seamus Ennis Field Diary 1942-1946 is now available in softback.
…meticulously edited and translated into English by Ríonach uí Ógáin, is a stupendous production, full of insight, gusto and intrepidity on the part of the author – and it comes complete with its editor’s valuable end-notes, and with evocative images (mostly old photographs) on nearly every page.
Patricia Craig, The Irish Times
This book is a gift, one that ought to be warmly received by all who study Ireland, Irish culture, traditional music, language, and history. It is valuable not because it presents us with a new argument about Ireland, or because there is a clear plotline that carries us along. This is after all a translated collection of Seamus Ennis’s field notes, not a novel or a history text or an ethnography. There is no academic conclusion or narrative to give us signposts as we follow Ennis around through the western counties of Ireland in the mid- 1940s on a quest for traditional music and song. What we do get instead is rich text filled with raw, first-hand experience and descriptions of daily life in western Ireland in the middle of the last century. And while a collection of field notes is not a typical genre for many of us to pick up off the bookshelves, Going to the Well for Water is a very enjoyable read.
Irish Studies Review