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Round Ireland with a Fridge
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Round Ireland with a Fridge

3.80  ·  Rating details ·  17,683 ratings  ·  1,033 reviews
Have you ever made a drunken bet? Worse still, have you ever tried to win one? In attempting to hitchhike round Ireland with a fridge, Tony Hawks did both, and his foolhardiness led him to one of the best experiences of his life. Joined by his trusty traveling companion-cum-domestic appliance, he made his way from Dublin to Donegal, from Sligo through Mayo, Galway, Clare,
Paperback, 248 pages
Published March 7th 2001 by Thomas Dunne Books (first published January 1st 1997)
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Hiral Arora This is a story about a guy who acts on a bet he made while drunk - of literally hitch-hiking around Ireland with a Fridge. Here, he contacts the nati…moreThis is a story about a guy who acts on a bet he made while drunk - of literally hitch-hiking around Ireland with a Fridge. Here, he contacts the national radio to inform them of his crazy idea. They pick up on his story and encourage people to help him out. Thus, people stop for the man with a fridge, and he accumulates a lot of free lunches on the way.
The best part about the book is the constant stream of unexpected humour right when things start to get dull.
This book is truly unputdownable!(less)

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Average rating 3.80  · 
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 ·  17,683 ratings  ·  1,033 reviews

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This is deeply, thoroughly OK, middle of the road inoffensive book, unless you are a fridge, in which case you will probably not approve of being moved around the countryside. Fridges like to settle down. They are naturally homebodies. Movement can cause bubbles in their coolant tubes which is generally bad news.

So this is one of those gently amusing books arising from somebody deciding to do something stupid for a bet. Had Hawks tried to do this in a less prosperous part of the world a good pa
Dec 12, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Completely ridiculous and fun. A British man drunkenly accepts a 100 pound bet that he can't circumnavigate Ireland while hitchhiking with a small fridge (which ends up costing him 130 pounds). It's heartening to see all the people who help him out and really get behind his quest. Hawks has a real gift for laugh-out-loud funny writing. And there's something moving about the whole journey, too--the insight that can come from doing things that are a bit silly. Makes you want to find a household ap ...more
Jun 04, 2007 rated it it was ok
Shelves: travel-essays
This is a gimmick travel book, and the gimmick is awesome: the author made a bar bet that he could travel around Ireland with a fridge. And by "travel," I mean "hithchike."

Unfortunately, that's the funniest part of the book. The rest of it - I got the feeling the author hadn't quite settled into his narrative voice in a written medium; much of it sounded like the kind of prolonged story that'd be hilarious if someone told it to you while you were having a couple of drinks with him. That doesn't
Paul O'Neill
Oct 15, 2016 rated it liked it
This was a fairly entertaining book which does exactly what it says on the tin. Lots of laughs included and Hawks personality certainly shines through.

Having been to Ireland myself, I can certainly appreciate the craic!

It's not going to change your life but still worth the read about an entirely unique and wacky bet!
Feb 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Read this book years ago and really enjoyed it, just finished the audio book read by the fridge man himself. Still very funny and interesting to hear the story from the storyteller.
Jul 18, 2008 rated it liked it
This guy's funny. But ridiculous.

It reminds me of my travels from when I was in college, when much of the excitement was a direct result of me and my friends being stupid and broke, and consequently everything around us goes wrong. And all of us wishing we were getting laid.

Tony Hawks is basically all of those things. Except he's probably still a little less broke, a smidge more competent, and a whole lot funnier than your average idiot on a college road trip. The premise, of course, is that Haw
Shawn Mooney (Shawn The Book Maniac)
One drunken night, somebody wagers that Tony Hawks, a British comedian, can't or won't hitchhike around Ireland with a fridge in tow. Wrong! He does so, as the title of this comic travel memoir makes clear, which is hilarious.

Unfortunately, there isn't much more hilarity once you get past the title. There's an amusing encounter with Prince Charles in a rope line, which I'll long remember. And to be clear, Tony Hawks did crack me up approximately a dozen times. Really cracked me up. But a dozen l
Jan 05, 2017 rated it liked it
Generally interesting enough , quirky and cheeky in many ways.
I think a lot of the humour didnt work for me but may do for those reading it from a non Irish view point. Things that may seem a bit mad to some all felt very mundane to me so didn't grab me really.
Still a fun enough book and an interesting look at what people will do if they hear about something going on on the radio.
Kelsey Rude
Apr 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Honestly, one of the funniest, happiest books I've ever read. ...more
Feb 08, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This book was awesome-- it's soo the type of travelogue I love to read. The title alone is enough to make you want to read it (and the cover, as tattered as it may be), but the premise behind his quest really hooked me. I read this book in about 2 days, and can honestly say that there wasn't a boring part to be found. In fact, I found myself laughing out loud at some of the people and situations he encountered, or just the way he described them. He's definitely got a way with humor, which I'm su ...more
Aj Sterkel
Feb 11, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: nonfiction
You know that tiny voice in your head that tells you to DNF a book? The voice that constantly reminds you that life’s too short to read bad stories? I really need to learn to listen to that voice.

Round Ireland with a Fridge is the memoir of British comedian Tony Hawks. I’d never heard of Tony Hawks (maybe because I’m not British), but the book sounded delightfully pointless. I’m always up for a good idiotic adventure. Also, I’d love to go to Ireland someday. I thought I could live vicariously th
Nov 17, 2014 rated it liked it
What happens when you make a stupid bet while drunk at a bar? If you are anything like Tony Hawks, you actually try to win the bet. With £100 at stake, Tony Hawks decides to hitchhike around Ireland with a fridge (even though buying the fridge cost him £130). Round Ireland with a Fridge is a travel memoir about the adventures Tony Hawks had with his fridge.

First of all, it is important to point out that Tony Hawks is a British comedian and is not to be confused with the skateboarder. While he is
Aug 12, 2011 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Kim by: Melki
The touching tale of a man and his fridge, this is the story of English comedian Tony Hawks who, for a £100 bet, hitch-hikes around Ireland in one month with a fridge.

This book really shows the good of people and the lengths some will go to to help someone else with no thought of reward. It's sad to think that this sort of thing would increasingly be harder to accomplish as people turn more inwards and less likely to help one another.

At times laugh out loud funny and at other times philosophical
Mar 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Travel Enthusiasts
Recommended to Andrea by: Nobody--I found it surfing the internet
What a fun book about a guy who lost a bet and thus hitch-hiked around Ireland with a fridge. (A true story.) I don't think I've ever laughed out loud as much as I did with this book. My only "complaint" would be that there wasn't enough info about the actual cities that he visited--I would have liked to learn more. The focus was really on the people, friendships and pubs. Definitely a fun read though if you're into travel books and can see the humor in hitch-hiking around Ireland with a fridge! ...more
Jan 23, 2020 rated it it was ok
It was ok, but I expected much more of a book about a journey around Ireland.
There were some parts that made me laugh, though; it's a light reading.
(I spent 3 weeks in Ireland in 1995, I didn't hitchhiked - I travelled mostly by bus - but I think my journey was much more interesting than his as I went to many interesting places other than just local pubs...)
Jul 30, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: bored-now
So I officially don't care about this man or his fridge. I've been trying to get through this book for a couple of months now. I finally listed it on Goodreads because I thought it would give me an incentive to finish it. But it's just not happening.

I think the problem is that each chapter is basically the same. TH has his bet to travel around Ireland with a fridge facilitated by a radio show that's following his story. So it's really not as wacky and visionary as it sounds -- more like a stunt
Emily Klepperich
Feb 16, 2010 rated it really liked it
This book written by the British author/comedian Tony Hawks, not the American Skateboarder Tony Hawks,and is a hilarious adventure into the Republic of Ireland where the odder you appear to be, the more you are embraced by its people.

Round Ireland with a Fridge is a true story, about Tony Hawks who took a bet that he could travel around the Republic of Ireland with a fridge, only by hitchhiking within one calendar month. The bet being for 100 pounds. However, the tale is that much more hilarious
Dan Domme
Jul 10, 2009 rated it really liked it
"The more foolish, illogical, or surreal one's actions were perceived to be (and mine surely fell into one of these categories), the wider the arms of hospitality were opened in salutation."

Tony Hawks knows how to make you laugh, even when you don't want to. I've earned my fair share of strange looks after I burst out with a chuckle at this book. In the first pages of recounting how the sordid wager to travel around Ireland with fridge in tow came about, Hawks paints a picture of the bizarre. On
Dec 18, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I wouldn't intially have read this had it not been picked as a 'bookclub' read because I was imagining a less funny version of a Danny Wallace book - I like Danny Wallace so didn't think this would come up to scratch but it did in a slightly more subtle way...found myself laughing out loud on page one which was a good sign and continued to have a good chuckle throughout the book - I thought the author had a really good way with words, some witty observations and it kept me entertained. Would be ...more
Zoe's Human
Apr 23, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: lt, beloved
The first time I read this, I laughed so hard that I fell off a bench in public and continued to laugh helplessly on the ground whilst flailing the book about.

Upon a second reading, I found myself able to maintain my seat; however, the flailing and tears of laughter were still plentiful.
Madhulika Liddle
Feb 04, 2020 rated it liked it
On a brief trip to Ireland, Tony Hawks was driving down a country road with a friend when the two of them saw a hitchhiker, accompanied by a full-sized refrigerator. Some years later, at a party where the liquor was flowing freely, Hawks mentioned that long-ago incident to a friend, who was as sozzled as Hawks was. A bet was made: his friend bet £100 that Hawks wouldn't be able to hitchhike round Ireland with a fridge.

A lot has to be said for Hawks's tenacity—and more, for his love of the ridic
Libby Russell
Jul 06, 2020 rated it it was ok
We Need To Talk About Sexism

i wanted to like this book so much. to its credit, it’s a real love letter to ireland and very affectionate about most of the people the writer met along the way. but my god, it’s so misogynistic. there’s also a fair amount of xenophobia thrown in too.

there’s obviously the initial overwhelming privilege that this man feels confident enough to hitchhike round a country seemingly without concern for his safety, other than that he might get bored or cold. socialised fe
Amanda Jayasinghe
Jun 06, 2021 rated it it was amazing
A bizarre, uproariously funny story.

I got to know about this book from a 2014 Vlogbrothers' video ('18 Great Books You Probably Haven't Read') and I suppose John had summarized the book to the point:

"Okay, couple of funny books: Round Ireland with a Fridge by Tony Hawks, not Tony Hawk. It's about a guy who hitchhikes around the circumference of Ireland with a refrigerator; it is one of the funniest things I've ever read."

True that, this is one of the funniest books I've got to read.

N.B: Before
Apr 11, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: five-star-rated
This book captures a slice of life. In a way, it captures a super-concentrated life, as Tony experiences quite a lot in just a month. The book provides snapshots of the lives of all the people Tony encounters--people in bars, people who work in hotels, tourists, the radio people, the king of Tory. Tony writes about all these people in a personal way that allows us to see them, just people we would never know otherwise. And in the process, Tony forms connections with all of them. It doesn't matte ...more
Simon Mcleish
Jun 21, 2012 rated it really liked it
Originally published on my blog here in February 2000.

Tony Hawks once did a comedy show in Ireland, and saw the bizarre sight of someone hitch-hiking with a fridge as though this were a perfectly normal thing to do. Telling this to a group of friends back in England led to a drunken bet that he could hitch-hike all the way around Ireland in under a month, with a fridge.

The story of the journey is amusing, but the reaction he gets is much what you would expect, bemused but genial helpfulness. The
May 04, 2011 rated it it was ok
I was disappointed, really wanted to like it. I didn't laugh once-maybe British humor is beyond me, but it seemed to me he was looking down his nose at the Irish, and seemed to think they were all nutcases-this from a man trailing a mini-fridge. It would have interested me more if he wasn't a celebrity attracting attention-seems like most of his rides were pre-arranged due to the publicity. It would have been a totally different book if he'd been anonymous and actually hitched rides; he whined w ...more
Apr 10, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Barbara by: Lesley - thanks!
Shelves: travel
Too much fun! Really enjoyed this off-kilter account of a man, a fridge, and a bet to hitchhike around Ireland. I don't know much about Tony Hawks except for what the book jacket says, but he tells a good story!

Following a late-night bar bet, Tony finds himself setting out from Dublin with a small fridge on a trolley, a rucksack and high hopes of hitchhiking around Ireland. Granted, he did get a bit of a boost from a nationally-heard radio show but his adventures, the people he met, time in pub
Mar 05, 2010 rated it did not like it
I don't think I've ever been as disappointed with a book as much as I am with this one. When I first came across it, I thought that the concept of a book being written about a man hitch-hiking around Ireland with a fridge was hilarious. Unfortunately, I don't think I laughed out loud once while reading it.

At first I was worried that maybe I had become immune from the hilarity of the usually unpredictable, charismatic and idiosyncratic eccentricities of the Irish due to having travelled a fair b
May 16, 2014 rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction
There were a couple parts that made me laugh, but in general the author's attempts to be funny were depressingly unsuccessful. He didn't seem interested in learning anything about Ireland, either. When he was in Sligo, where my family is originally from, all he did was get drunk and watch a game of football/soccer. At one point he called Irish stepdancing 'River Dance', which is sort of a pet peeve of mine and which makes clear how little Hawks (who's from England) actually knows about Irish cul ...more
May 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Krissy, Haley, Maura
Recommended to Fox by: Townes v. Z.
Shelves: memoir, non-fiction, own, 2009
What a delightful book! The Fridge Man had it far too easy, relying primarily off of his own publicity in order to get rides. I would have liked it if he had had to overcome more adversity in the horrors of rural Ireland. Or if he had at least gotten into a few fights. As it was, this book was a lighthearted testimony to the absurd. Which was pretty fine by me.

The back of the book had promised that it would owe some to Bill Bryson, and I found that it did, but without some of Bryson's more endea
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Tony Hawks, is a British comedian and author, famous for his Quizotic travel accounts undertaking bizarre wagers with friends. Hawks performs stand-up comedy, and is a regular on TV and radio panel games in the UK, including I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, Just a Minute, The Unbelievable Truth and Have I Got News for You, although he first came to prominence as one of two resident performers — the oth ...more

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  Jordan Morris is a comedy writer and podcaster whose credits include @Midnight, Unikitty! and Earth to Ned.  The sci-fi comedy Bubble is his...
8 likes · 3 comments
“One guy, seeing that I was hungry, insisted on buying me a huge lunch and when I thanked him for his kindness, he simply said, 'Pass it on.' I liked this selfless concept - repay me by rewarding someone else entirely with a generous dollop of goodwill.” 23 likes
“I was beginning to understand how the Irish mentality worked. The more foolish, illogical or surreal one's actions were perceived t be (and mine surely fell into one of these categories), the wider the arms of hospitality were opened in salutation.” 13 likes
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