In today's Irish Times, Derek Scally has a nice piece about Markus Feldenkirchen's novel Was zusammengehört and the affectionate feelings many Germans have for Ireland. Scally writes:
The original of this particular species of book is Ireland Journal , by German Nobel Prize laureate Heinrich Böll. This slim volume encouraged a wave of immigration to Ireland in the late 1960s of West Germans who felt alienated at home. At first Böll’s book, and his immigrants, were greeted in Ireland with baffled amusement and then, as the country hurried down the road to modernity, with increasing annoyance. If these blow-ins had their way, the natives complained, Ireland would be forced to retain its backward ways and become a rustic, open-air clinic for emotionally damaged Germans.
Which I find very amusing, seeing as I know a good few of these teutonic celtophiles myself. Feldenkirchen is younger and writes about today's Ireland, with an added love interest. The critics are loving it. In this case, the book has a nice modern cover and is clearly not being marketed specifically to the Guinness-loving crowd.
Compare and contrast Swiss writer Rolf Lappert's award-winning Nach Hause schwimmen (a couple of extracts translated by Donal McLaughlin are available on Donal's homepage), also set partly in Ireland. I haven't read this novel either, but the cover so obviously plays on the Böll-style rural idyll cliché it makes my teeth hurt.