– Robert Williams, Chief US writer for the Virunga National Park
‘My first encounter with ‘Quondam: Travels in a once World’, and its author John Devoy, came in the form of a video, in which he read an extract from it.
His delivery drew me in – the easy manner and intonations of his words felt as if we were buddies from the off. With ‘a brazen confidence’, his voice stuck in my head and our conversation began what a ‘conversation’ it has been.
The textures, colours, mood and sheer honesty of his writing flooded my mind’s eye, so much so, that it felt we were a couple of pals having a chat. I felt it was ‘our’ journey and I, as the silent partner, was as invested in the story as he in the telling.
That ‘voice’ delivered the moments of travel with an easy going canter, coaxing me to follow. At times in this story you may well feel you are right there, by a campfire in Sudan or in the jungle of Zaire, standing willingly to guard over our journeyman, as he sleeps and recovers, before pushing on to the next stage of this remarkable cycling story.
My advice is; as the final chapters approach, take a little time to retrace on the map the beginning of this ride from Cairo to the point at which you are, and then reflect on the words of Dervla Murphy when she said, ” Some books need photos, this one doesn’t!” From there, as you reach the end, in the final pages, it doesn’t so much tidy up any lose ends – but creates more emotional anticipation of what will follow. I will tell you this, it will be your privilege to ride pillion with John Devoy in Quondam: Travels in a once World.’
– Bobby McDonald. 11/11/18
– Dervla Murphy
– Ted Simon
– Kevin J. O’Sullivan
– Graham Strouts
– Mícheál Kenefick, Whitegate, Co. Cork
– Tiernan Dolan, Longford
– Brian Granaghan
– Frank Clohosey
– Paul Brennan
– Stephan Gross
– Daniel T. O Donovan
– Lucy Pattinson
– Patricia Keane
Madeline of ‘Brown Envelope Seeds’
Nora Newsom, Youghal.
Asli Ergil Jaeger
Alan Ball, Nantes, France