February 25th, 2013

Irish Name for a Fictional Town

Setting: A fictional town located on the coast of southern Ireland (around County Kerry or thereabouts).

I'm about to write a fantasy story that takes place in a small fictional Irish town and need an Irish name for the town. The town was once cursed, but then the villagers got smart and were able to break the curse, and I want the name of the town to reflect that. I'm thinking something that translates along the lines of Redemption, New Day or Second Chance.

I've tried Google, English to Irish/Gaelic dictionaries and sites that claim to teach you old Gaelic but mostly just teach you the Gaelic alphabet. They were not helpful. There is an Irish Language Forum but I'm hesitant to sign up to something I may very well only use once - it just doesn't feel right with this particular forum - except as a last resort.

daily-life-detail books

Little Details, I have a question that may or may not fit here. (If it doesn't, mods: please tell me!)

I have found what looks like an excellent book: China's Golden Age: Everyday Life in the Tang Dynasty. This book is, essentially, a book of Little Details - it's got information about every tiny aspect of society, and answers all the sorts of questions I've seen answered here ("what did X eat in the morning?" "what would Y wear to a ball?" "what was deoderant made of in the Z century?") in a readable, informative manner - it doesn't sound like someone's graduation thesis, nor like a listing of items, but like someone talking to you conversationally.

What I would like to know is: are there other books like this? I've looked around on The Goog Machine, and as far as I can tell, the author only wrote one book. There's a series out there talking about "daily life in X time period", which sounds like about what I'm looking for. What I am interested in is readable, informative books full of fantastic little details. (Just for another example, I had a fantastic book called How Would You Survive As A Viking as a kid.)

Time period doesn't matter - I am interested in everytime - but I have a predeliction for non-Western. I would be thrilled if there was something like this for other Chinese dynasties (esp. Yuan and Three Kingdoms!), and I am pretty interested in India and Southeast Asia as well.

(Final note: I am living in China, in a city with no English bookstores, and so answers of "just go to a library" will not avail me, I'm afraid. It's Amazon or bust for me over here.)

So: have you guys come across any excellent books of this type?


EDIT ADDED 2/28/13: oh man oh man, little_details, you have come through magnificently! Thanks, all you guys, and I will definitely be checking out some of these! :D!
  • Current Location: Harbin, China
  • Current Mood: curious
  • Current Music: Rodrigo y Gabriela