Beautifully crafted and emotionally powerful, GRACELIN O'MALLEY is a breathtaking historical novel that marks the debut of a dazzling new storyteller.
Nineteenth century Ireland comes vividly to life in what Publishers Weekly calls the "finely wrought tale" of Gracelin O'Malley; her brilliant, crippled brother Sean; and their childhood friend, Morgan McDonagh, the reluctant hero of a revolution.
Marriage to English landlord Bram Donnelly elevates Grace into a world at once fascinating and challenging, but acceptance is slow, and her husband becomes increasingly cruel. When potato blight devastates the countryside, Grace feeds the growing number of starving tenants who turn to the manor, defying her husband and bringing his wrath down upon her head; she compromises - for the sake of their young child - and strikes a twisted bargain that leads, in the end, to Donnelly's murder. As political unrest sweeps across the land, and suspects are rounded up, Grace harbors Irish rebels - her own fanatical brother among them - hiding, as well, the deepest secret of her heart. And as disaster threatens those she loves most, Grace fights to keep them alive, her profound courage affecting everyone around her.
Accent, August 2001