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Galway granny and granddaughter have a hit book on their hands

The cross-country odyssey of a little girl and a lion – dreamt up together by a Galway grandmother and granddaughter – has now been published in English after its meteoric success in Irish.

Galway City Museum was the venue last week for the launch of the children’s book Máistir Leon ag Taisteal and the English version Mr Lion on Tour.

The books follow Mr. Lion and the little girl Róisín as they travel around Ireland in their minibus and discover some interesting facts and myths about the places they visit.

The books are aimed at children eight years and upwards and hope to inspire a love of history, geography, mythology and culture without getting too bogged down!

The characters were created by Eithne Nic Dhonnchadha and her granddaughter Róisín – inspired by Eithne’s years of teaching and Róisín’s dad’s stories from his experiences as a tour bus driver.

Eithne Nic Dhonnchadha is the former Director of Further Education and Training at Galway Roscommon Education and Training Board, with over 40 years in education and training at second and Further Education levels.

The cover design is by Alana McDonough, a graphic designer from Cill Chiaráin with some beautiful drawings by artist Prionsias Nic Dhonnacha of An Grianán Aileach, Newgrange and the Book of Kells.

There are lovely images by Damiano and Sarah Lacalamita and Cliodhna Nic Dhonnacha in the book as well as a lovely photograph of the Róisín Dúbh, a traditional sailing boat by Marie Ridge.

Speaking at the launch of the books Eithne said it was a joy to work with her granddaughter Róisín and all the artists who came on the journey with her.

The books will be available in Charlie Byrne’s Bookshop in Galway as well as bookshops around Connemara and further afield.

(Photo by Sean Lydon: Meadbh Seoighe of Údarás na Gaeltachta with authors Eithne Nic Dhonnchadha, Róisìn Nic Dhonnacha at the launch of “Mr Lion on Tour / Máistir Leon ag Taisteal”).

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune:

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