Wheels Within Wheels: The Making of a Traveller
What is it that makes us who we are? In this beautifully written and searingly honest autobiography, the intrepid cyclist and traveller Dervla Murphy remembers her richly unconventional first thirty years. She describes her determined childhood self - strong-willed and beguiled by books from the first - her intermittent formal education and the intense relationship of an o...more
ebook, 245 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Eland
(first published 1979)
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It’s not long ago that I mentioned that it would be interesting to know more about Dervla Murphy. Well, I hope all my wishes come through so quicklly. I got plenty of exciting travel volumes for my birthday and finished Wheels Within Wheels already. This autobiography from my admired Miss Murphy claryfies most issues about her life and about her motives for escape. Her tough childhood and stubborn personality all come through marvellously readibly in her book and I found it hard to put down. Her...more
I really like this book! She is born the same year as my father, 1931, in Ireland. I've not read anything else by Dervla Murphy, and I can't remember how I heard about her. At the age of 31, Dervla set off by bicycle to India. It was 1962, definitely the pre-hippy, pre- vagabonding era. Her travel writing brought her renown, but her life prior to her extensive travels is highly interesting, especially given her immense ability to write. Wheels Within Wheels is her autobiography of her childhood...more
Aug 17, 2010 Catherine rated it 5 of 5 stars · review of another edition
Already a huge Dervla Murphy fan, I came across this book about her unconventional upbringing in a charity shop and read it that afternoon. Her writing style is so engaging and enjoyable to read that I immediately felt that I wished to be her friend! And that I wanted to re-read her other immensely enjoyable books.
I really enjoyed her honesty about her life. I have read two other of her travel stories. Both are quite incredible adventures. She travels alone and frequently on a bicycle. The travel was done in the 1960's. Although heading into her eighties she still travels extensively.
Sep 21, 2013 Peter Perhac rated it 4 of 5 stars · review of another edition
A great book, a must read for every Dervla fan, but! a bit too heavy on the IRA political stuff right from the beginning (i advise to skip/skim over this) and one major piece of information - one that I was so eager to find out about Dervla - was completely omitted. Bummer!
This was a terrificially honest book. Dervlas love of cycling, her fraught relationship with her bed ridden mother and the birth of her child stays with me still after 20 years. Clearly a strong minded and independant woman.
Murphy grew up in the small town of Lismore, County Waterford, to parents she describes as "Dublin bourgeoisie". Her father was the local librarian and her mother suffered from rheumatoid arthritis. From an early age she wanted to travel; she claims that for her tenth birthday she received an atlas and a bicycle and decided to cycle to India. However, she left school at 14 and spent much of the ne...moreMore about Dervla Murphy...