Completed 2012 Challenges

I’ve completed my goal for the Ireland Reading Challenge (4 books), and even surpassed it by one; here’s a list of the books with links to the reviews:

The Yellow House by Patricia Falvey
A Long, Long Way by Sebastian Barry
The Cottage at Glass Beach by Heather Barbieri
The Paper Garden by Molly Peacock
The Realm of the Lost by Emma Eden Ramos

For the New Authors Reading Challenge, I chose to read 25 new to me authors, and I exceeded that goal, reading 87 and still counting.

These authors included fiction, nonfiction, and poetry.  You can click the link to see which ones I reviewed.

And finally, for my own two challenges, the Fearless Poetry Exploration Reading Challenge and the WWI Reading Challenge, I exceeded my goals there as well.  For the poetry challenge, I pledged to read more than I had read in a previous poetry challenge (in which I read 15) and I read 29 books.  There could be more!

For the WWI Reading Challenge, I pledged to read 4-10 books, and I read 14 books.  Please feel free to click the link to see which ones I reviewed.  I’m hoping to finish up one more in this challenge, but I’m swiftly running out of time.

This leaves me with one unfinished challenge, but I’ll leave you in suspense about that.  I hope everyone has a great weekend.  Please do let me know about your own reading goals in 2012 and how well you did.

The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry (Second Edition) edited by Jon Silkin, David McDuff

The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry (Second edition) edited by Jon Silkin and David McDuff is a collection of poetry from and about the WWI.  Silkin and McDuff  increased the number of poems in translation included in the collection.  There are poems translated from German, French, Italian, Russian, and Hebrew, and Silkin was a poet himself.  As expressed in the not at the beginning, “For some, war was moral athletics; others looked forward to the experience of war as a ‘vacation from life’ — a vacation from a society disjoined by class and constrained by the rigid structures of labour.”  (page 12)

***However, I’m not one for long introductions so I skipped over it this time around and got straight to the poetry. ***

The anthology includes some of the more well known WWI poets, Thomas Hardy and Robert Graves, but also some who are not as well known.  One of the most well known WWI poems is “Anthem for Doomed Youth” by Wilfred Owen, which seeks to command a respect for the thousands who died in a cause for freedom and defense.  Steeped in religious allusions Owen makes reference to the candles lit where bodies lie and to the drawing of blinds in those same rooms as well as the prayers that often accompany the mourning process, but there also is an underlying celebration for their sacrifice as the bells are rung and anthems are sung.

Each of these poems brings with it a different perspective on war in the trenches, love, life, and loss, but above all patriotism.  Isaac Rosenberg’s “Dead Man’s Dump” (page 211) is particularly haunting:

"The wheels lurched over sprawled dead
But pained them not, though their bones crunched,
Their shut mouths made no moan.
They lie there huddled, friend and foeman,"

Meanwhile, there is a true sense of fear in Ivor Gurney’s “The Silent One,” (page 116):

"Who died on the wires, and hung there, one of two --
Who for his hours of life had clattered through
Infinite lovely chatter of Bucks accent:
Yet faced unbroken wires; stepped over, and went
A noble fool, faithful to his stripes -- and ended
But I weak, hungry, and willing only for the chance
Of line -- to fight in the line, lay down under unbroken
Wires, and saw the flashes and kept unshaken
Till the politest voice -- a finicking accent, said:
'Do you think you might crawl through there: there's a hole'
Darkness, shot at:  I smiled, as politely replied --
'I'm afraid not, Sir.' There was no hole no way to be seen
Nothing but chance of death, after tearing of clothes."

Each poet in the collection bring their own perspective to war, but there seems to be a pervading reverence to the fight these soldiers’ waged and all that they sacrificed.  There were certain translated poems in the book that didn’t resonate as well as some others, including Benjamin Peret’s “Little Song of the Maimed,” but it was good to revisit an old WWI poet, Osip Mandelstam (check out my earlier review of Stolen Air).  The Penguin Book of First World War Poetry (Second edition) edited by Jon Silkin and David McDuff offers a collection of poems that provide a wide perspective on war from the patriotism the soldiers felt to their fear and horror at the experiences they had.

About the Editors:

Jon Silkin was born in London, in a Jewish immigrant family and named after Jon Forsyte in The Forsyte Saga, and attended Wycliffe College and Dulwich College. During the Second World War, he was one of the children evacuated from London, and for a period of about six years in the 1950s, after National Service, he supported himself by manual labour and other menial jobs. He wrote a number of works on the war poetry of World War I. He was known also as editor of the literary magazine Stand, which he founded in 1952, and which he continued to edit (with a hiatus from 1957 to 1960) until his death.

David McDuff is a British translator, editor and literary critic. He attended the University of Edinburgh, where he studied Russian and German. After living for some time in the Soviet Union, Denmark, Iceland, and the United States, he eventually settled in the United Kingdom, where he worked for several years as a co-editor and reviewer on the literary magazine Stand. He then moved to London, where he began his career as a literary translator.



This review first appeared on Historical Tapestry for WWI Week.





This is my 14th book for the WWI Reading Challenge.



This is the 21st book for my 2012 Fearless Poetry Exploration Reading Challenge.

My Dear I Wanted to Tell You by Louisa Young

My Dear I Wanted to Tell You by Louisa Young is a WWI novel and love story that illustrates the toll that war takes on couples from mere recruits to the officers that give them orders.  Young’s novel examines social and monetary class distinctions, even providing slight nuances to the “poshies” in how they treat the working class.  Truly, this is a love story — the story of Riley Purefoy and Nadine Waveney, childhood sweethearts separated by more than the war.

The narration sets it up so that readers get to know Nadine and Riley in their early years and the timid beginnings of their love, which helps not only anchor the emotional arc of the story but the connection readers feel to them both.  Nadine is from an upper class family with artistic roots — her father is a famous conductor — and Riley is from a working class family.  Both end up under the tutelage of Sir Arthur, a famous artist, who sees potential in Riley and Nadine.  Eventually, they are separated by her parents who refuse to send her to Sir Arthur’s for lessons if Riley is still working there, which ultimately pushes Riley to see his fortunes through a different lens and join the military.

“He had to pull the bayonet out again, which was strange.  And that wasn’t an end:  it was just a moment on a long line of moments, and time went on, and they went on.  He stepped away in a mist of red, a numbness spread across him, a sense of capacity.  He smelt the blood, and took on the mantle of it.  He ran on, screaming, til he found himself alongside Ainsworth, and felt safer.”  (Page 40-1)

The introduction of CO Peter Locke, his wife Julia, and his cousin Rose serve as a juxtaposition to the love of Riley and Nadine, but although Locke’s story is of interest in how the war can change a man, his wife Julia can be trying and insipid — wearing on readers’ nerves.  Julia is self-absorbed to the point that she finds her actions for self-improvement as a way to “do her bit” for the cause by becoming the perfect wife in looks and caring for the household, rather than volunteering to care for the soldiers.  Locke, himself, is more in the background providing support for the soldiers and holding in the horrors and losses he’s experienced, but eventually, his story jumps to the forefront and readers see a broken man wallowing in women and booze.

If no one won that, after all that, that — if neither side won that, then neither side can win. The war won, and goes on winning.” (Page 125)

Young has the skill and detail to capture the horrors of war from the adrenaline rush of battle to the devastation of losing one’s companions and comrades. She also captures in realistic and devastating description the medical procedures used to reconstruct faces and other body parts of wounded soldiers — so much so, that some readers may squirm in their seats.  The war itself becomes a character taking over all that is good and twisting it, shoving the best bits into the waste bin.  However, the overarching themes celebrate the perseverance of the human spirit and its ability to recover from even the most devastating injuries — no matter if they are physical or emotional.  My Dear I Wanted to Tell You by Louisa Young is by turns endearing and horrifying, and WWI is ever-present in everything these characters face and endure.

About the Author:

Louisa Young grew up in London, England, in the house in which Peter Pan was written, and she studied modern history at Cambridge. She was a freelance journalist and has written ten books, including the Orange Prize–longlisted Baby Love. She is the co-author of the bestselling Lionboy trilogy, which has been published in thirty-six languages. She lives in London and Italy with her daughter and the composer Robert Lockhart.  Check out her Website.

This is my 50th book for the New Authors Reading Challenge 2012.



This is my 13th book for the WWI Reading Challenge.

A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway

Happy 4th of July, Everyone!

A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway is an emotionally draining novel about Tenente Frederic Henry, an American serving in the ambulance corps of the Italian army during World War I, and the impact of war on its soldiers, displaced populations, and others.  Some critics say that the novel is semi-autobiographical given that Hemingway did indeed serve in the Italian Army as an ambulance driver during the Great War; learn more about the autobiographical elements here.

While WWI and the front is always in the background and weighing heavily on the characters, much of the focus is on Henry and his relationship with Nurse Catherine Barkley of Britain.  When they meet, it seems as though both are contriving a romance out of thin air, and when Barkley’s past is revealed readers understand her desperation, though they may not like it.

“‘This is the third day. But I’m back now.’
She looked at me, ‘And you do love me?’
‘You did say you loved me, didn’t you?’
‘Yes,’ I lied. ‘I love you.’ I had not said it before.
‘And you call me Catherine?’
‘Catherine.’ We walked on a way and were stopped under a tree.
‘Say, “I’ve come back to Catherine in the night.”
‘I’ve come back to Catherine in the night.’
‘Oh, darling, you have come back, haven’t you?'” (page 30)

Henry is another matter, with the distant, first-person account of events in the past, readers will know little of how he makes decisions or how he feels unless he speaks aloud.  In many ways, the reader must focus on what is not said to catch a glimmer of the hopelessness of his situation and the conviction he has in remaining with the Italian army even as it appears that they are losing the war.  The silences of his mind and the things left unsaid in conversation make a surface reading of this novel inadequate (please check out Jeanne’s posts on this book from the read-a-long with War Through the Generations).

“I was afraid we would move out of the eddy and, holding with one hand, I drew up my feet so they were against the side of the timber and shoved hard toward the bank. I could see the brush, but even with my momentum and swimming as hard as I could, the current was taking me away. I thought then I would drown because of my boots, but I thrashed and fought through the water, and when I looked up the bank was coming toward me, and I kept thrashing and swimming in a heavy-footed panic until I reached it.” (Page 227)

There are moments where the supply shortages are noted, but there seems to be a never-ending supply of alcohol, which Henry uses to deal with the pain in his leg and the war that continues to rage on without an end.  He loses friends, he loses his way, he must escape the enemy, and he must survive.  There is desperation and scrambling for comfort and a sense of normalcy, but the hopelessness pervades everything in the novel and highlights the truth of war.  Hemingway’s terse sentences, little insight into his main character, and the over-the-top antics and subservience of Barkley to Henry can get overwrought.  However, in the latter portion of the novel there are moments of tenderness between Barkley and Henry are good to see and temper the uneasiness readers may feel about their relationship and its lack of depth.

A Farewell to Arms by Ernest Hemingway is a stark look at the emotional and psychological effects of war on soldiers, residents, and nurses, but it also raises questions about courage and bravery, whether peasants are beaten before they even enter the war, and how everyone, even the most dedicated, have a breaking point.  Readers may find the novel plodding and ridiculous, and the characters distant and obnoxious at times, but with the threat of war at the backdoor, it must be hard to remain rational and unemotional.  However, in this way, Henry’s actions often seem super-human, particularly during his knee surgery and other events.

Check out the read-a-long discussions for week 1, week 2, week 3, and week 4 at War Through the Generations.

This is my 12th book for the WWI Reading Challenge.

Final Week: Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms Read-a-Long

For the WWI Reading Challenge, we did a group read of Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms.

For the final week, participants of the challenge and non-participants read chapters 31-END. Each Friday, we posted discussion questions and answers on the War Through the Generations blog.

Head on over today to check out what we’re discussing, but be aware that there could be spoilers.

Stay tuned for my full review on July 4th!

Week 3: Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms Read-a-Long

For the WWI Reading Challenge, we’re doing a group read of Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms.

For the second week, participants of the challenge and non-participants read chapters 21-30. Each Friday, we’ll be posting discussion questions and answers on the War Through the Generations blog.

Head on over today to check out what we’re discussing, but be aware that there could be spoilers.

Week 2: Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms Read-a-Long

For the WWI Reading Challenge, we’re doing a group read of Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms.

For the second week, participants of the challenge and non-participants read chapters 11-20.  Each Friday, we’ll be posting discussion questions and answers on the War Through the Generations blog.

Head on over today to check out what we’re discussing, but be aware that there could be spoilers.

Week 1: Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms Read-a-Long

For the WWI Reading Challenge, we’re doing a group read of Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms.

For this first week, participants of the challenge and non-participants read chapters one through 10.  Each Friday, we’ll be posting discussion questions and answers on the War Through the Generations blog.

Head on over today to check out what we’re discussing, but be aware that there could be spoilers.

Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms Read-a-Long

Even if you aren’t participating in the War Through the Generations WWI Reading Challenge this year, you’re still welcome to participate in the annual read-a-long.

This year, Anna and I selected Ernest Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms for the read-a-long book.

If you’re interested, we’ll be posting discussion questions and answers each week on the Friday.  Here’s the schedule:

Week 1 — June 1-8 Chapters 1-10

Week 2 — June 9-15 Chapters 11-20

Week 3 — June 16-22 Chapters 21-30

Week 4 — June 23-29 Chapters 31-41

We hope you’ll join us for some great reading and discussion.

Archie’s War: My Scrapbook of the First World War 1914-1918 by Marcia Williams

Archie’s War: My Scrapbook of the First World War 1914-1918 by Marcia Williams is the story of ten-year-old Archie Albright, who receives a scrapbook from his uncle Colin.  Archie is a boy living in East London, England, who’s in love with drawing and comics, and he’s a got a best friend named Tom and a dog named Georgie.  In the book he explains a little bit about his family, particularly his 16-year-old sister’s interest in voting.  Once talk about Austria declaring war on Serbia begins, Archie’s house becomes divided with his grandmother and father in favor of Britain entering the war, and his sister against the war and eager for peace to remain.  Once Germany invades Britain’s ally Belgium, Britain has little choice but to enter the war.  Archie’s scrapbook includes a nice break down of which countries were allied with Germany and which were allied with Britain, and it includes copies of news articles reminiscent of the time period.  Plus, there is a running body count, which is something that young boys would likely keep track of.

Unlike other scrapbooks that merely use memorabilia and newspaper articles, etc. to depict the time period and the events in the story, Williams has incorporated comics as a young boy would draw them, complete with images of his family in hilarious poses, slapping and biting of siblings, and other typical family events of the time period.  Even in spite of Archie’s jokes and comics, it is clear that the war has him rattled as adults talk about German residents as if they could be spies.  He even pees out the window of his room rather than go to the outside bathroom to avoid a German attack, though when his grandmother finds out about his antics, he’s scolded and yet resolved to continue peeing out the window rather than go outside.

There are other more serious moments, like when Archie’s father goes off to war with his Uncle Derek and his mother and older brother begin working outside the home.  Nurse Edith Cavell‘s story is depicted in comic form as well, with Archie saluting her bravery.

Archie’s War: My Scrapbook of the First World War 1914-1918 by Marcia Williams is a fun way to introduce WWI to kids and provides parents an interactive tool to teach history to children in a way that will not bore them.  The colorful drawings are things that children can easily relate to, and the newspaper clippings provide the book a nuanced historical accuracy.  Williams does well including letters and mementos as well as stories that accurately depict the times of rationing, women heading to work outside the home, soldiers dying or returning shell shocked, and more.  Archie’s world changes before his eyes, and he can do little else but roll with the punches and record his family’s history.

About the Author and Illustrator:

Marcia Williams is famous for her retellings of classic stories. From Shakespeare and Dickens to the Canterbury Tales and Greek Myths, her humorous comic-strip illustration is hugely popular all over the globe. She lives in London.  Visit her fun Website.

This is my 11th book for the WWI Reading Challenge.




This is my 43rd book for the 2012 New Authors Challenge.

Stolen Air by Osip Mandelstam, translated by Christian Wiman

Stolen Air by Osip Mandelstam, translated by Christian Wiman is a selection of poems from Mandelstam’s entire career translated from his non-native Russian into English.  The introduction is rather long, but with good reason as it strives to capture a poet that was always evolving and striving to breath new life into the Russian language and to provide a voice to those seen as outsiders of the government.  Living through WWI and a Russian revolution, Mandelstam — a Poland born Jew who moved to Russia with his parents — became an exile and later died in a Siberian transit camp in 1938 after being arrested.

“From the inarticulate comes the new harmony.  The lyric poet wakes up the language:  the speech is revealed to us in a new unexpected syntax, in music, in ways of organizing the silences in the mouth.”  (Page XIX)

Mandelstam and Wiman approach poetry in much the same way, according to the introduction — not through word-for-word translation, but through the silences and the music of the lines.  The collection is broken into three sections beginning with his early poems between 1910 and 1925 and ending with the poems written between 1934 and 1937.  Mandelstam’s work is very musical and generally uses a great deal of rhyme and alliteration, but the ways in which these poems are translated, they are neither cutesy nor predictable.

Interrogation (page 21)

Official paper, officious jowls, unswallowable smells
Of vomit, vodka, cells, bowels,
And all these red-tape tapeworms gorging on reports.

Choir, stars, your highest, your holiest silences...
But first, sign here on the dotted line
That they may grant you permission to shine.

The poems are song-like, but ripe with derision for Stalin’s totalitarianism and the control over freedom, which provided many with the guise of free expression that was received at a high price. Mandelstam speaks of a life choreographed by others and punishments that are deeply harsh when spontaneity strikes. His words are like hammers on the chains attached to boulders in prisons of old, making sure the lack of freedom is felt most acutely. From the “legislated” freedoms to the starvation and lack of heat, it is all present in Mandelstam’s roving poetry. He moved from city to city, presumably fleeing the government, and this movement is in poems like “Night Piece” and “Prayer” but it also is in the other poems through their quick imagistic movements from one moment to the next — the narrator always in motion.

Stolen Air by Osip Mandelstam, translated by Christian Wiman is not only about the absence of freedom, but finding that freedom within that totalitarian regime — grabbing onto it, stealing the air to breathe creatively. The narrator has learned to grab onto that stolen air and run with it, traipsing through beauty and finding the music everywhere, even in the darkness.  The translation does not read as such with very few moments where the verse stumbles, and this is the best tribute to a poet — a translator who hears the same music even across time.  Well done and highly recommended.

About the Poet (from Poets.org):

Born in January, 1891, in Warsaw, Poland, Osip Emilievich Mandelstam was raised in the imperial capital of St. Petersburg, Russia. His father was a prominent leather merchant and his mother a teacher of music. Mandelstam attended the renowned Tenishev School and later studied at the Sorbonne, the University of Heidelberg, and the University of St. Petersburg, though he left off his studies to pursue writing. He published his first collection, Kamen, or Stone (1913), when Russian Symbolism was the dominant persuasion.

The Bolsheviks had begun to exert an ever increasing amount of control over Russian artists, and Mandelstam, though he had initially supported the Revolution, was absolutely unwilling to yield to the political doctrine of a regime that had executed Gumilev in 1921. The poet published three more books in 1928—Poems, a collection of criticism entitled On Poetry, and The Egyptian Stamp, a book of prose—as the state closed in on him. Mandelstam spent his later years in exile, serving sentences for counter-revolutionary activities in various work camps, until his death on December 27, 1938, in the Gulag Archipelago.

About the Translator:

Christian Wiman was born and raised in West Texas. He is the editor of Poetry and the author of three collections of poems, Every Riven Thing, Hard Night, and The Long Home, and one collection of prose, Ambition and Survival: Becoming a Poet.

This is the 16th book for my 2012 Fearless Poetry Exploration Reading Challenge.




This is my 41st book for the 2012 New Authors Challenge.




This is my 10th book for the WWI Reading Challenge.

The Yellow House by Patricia Falvey & Read-a-Long

The Yellow House by Patricia Falvey, which is her first novel, is an incredible, sweeping novel set in Ireland during the beginning of the nation’s struggle for freedom from Britain, the rise of the IRA, and WWI.  Eileen O’Neill, our heroine, comes from a long line of warriors or so her Da tells her, and she revels in his folklore and his stories about how the O’Neills stole back the yellow house from the Sheridans who had once stole it from them.  The dynamics of the family often mirror the political situation in Ireland as her father is struck down and her mother looses her moorings and drifts.  Eileen’s brother Frank becomes even more angry and distant, mirroring the heightened angst over Ireland’s freedom and the dedication of its people to the Cause.

“Secrets are the cancer of families.  Like tumors, they grow ever larger, and if they are not removed, they suffocate the mind and spirit and spawn madness.  As long as they remain, they cast a shadow on every truth that is uttered, clouding it, constricting it, distorting it.  Secrets hurt the secret keeper as much as the poor souls from whom the secret is kept.  And even once the secret is out, its shadow echoes into the future, the remnants of its memory leaving us vigilant and fearful.”  (Page 241)

A young woman with a dreamer for a father and a mother keeping secrets is bound to get into trouble, and Eileen is no different, especially since she’s such a headstrong and stubborn girl to begin with.  Her family falls apart when times get financially troubling for them and their father, who is a poor farmer, is forced to mortgage their home.  Their mother sets about turning things back and begging for her own family’s forgiveness and pity to save her own family.  As the dominoes begin to fall heavily and quickly around the O’Neill family, some members fall apart, some rise up and hold onto their anger and resentments, and others hold onto their dreams.

“As we strolled along the promenade, I looked down at the gold wedding band on my left hand.  It felt heavy and strange, as if this new identity were crushing me.  I tried to smile.”  (Page 138)

Eileen meets James and is swept away by his passion for a free Ireland and a comeuppance for the Protestants who continue to save all of the jobs for their own kind.  Readers will be swept away by Eileen’s passion and dreams as she struggles against forces beyond her control and even against her husband, whose dreams are no longer her own.  WWI intervenes in the struggle for independence and forces many of the characters to reassess their priorities, including Eileen’s friend, Owen Sheridan, and even Eileen herself as she begins working with the injured soldiers at the hospital.

Reuniting the O’Neill family becomes a driving force in the novel, and Falvey’s prose is at once haunting and steeped in its own lore.  Her characters are flawed, frustrating, and forgivable, but the gem here is the symbolism and the history she weaves into Eileen’s story from the yellow house and the mountain Slieve Mullion to Ireland’s historic struggle for independence.  The Yellow House by Patricia Falvey is excellent.  It will sweep readers off their feet, whisking them off to the Irish countryside, into the workhouse slums, and back again.  Fast-paced, deep, heartbreaking, and romantic — Falvey is a writer to watch light up the shelves with her prose.

Another winner for 2012.

***Here are the final week’s Ireland Reading Challenge read-a-long questions and answers.  These may contain spoilers, so if you don’t want to read them, skip to the giveaway!***

Check out part one, two, and three of the discussions.

Were you as angry as I was when Eileen slept with James while pregnant with Owen’s baby, in order to pass the baby off as his?

I expected it as a “good” Catholic girl in a bind and already plagued by talk of the affair at the mill, etc.  Plus, she’s impetuous and does things without thinking about the consequences until later.

Was Owen’s reaction to that justified, in your opinion?


Did you understand why Eileen was so torn about reporting what she knew about James’ plans for the mill?

Yes, but I’m glad she did.  James is her husband, though that matters little, but it does matter that he’s the father of her daughter and no mother wants to have to explain to their child why their da is in jail or dead.

What about her hesitancy to marry Owen?

I agree that she should wait and take some time to sort through those events that hit her boom, boom, boom…from the injury of her brother, seeing Billy killed, and finally reuniting with her sister, plus informing on her husband and nearly shooting James, that’s a lot for a person to process.  I think it showed maturity that she knew she needed more time to think about things and sort it all out, rather than her usual rash decisions that ruled her life.

What did you think of how things ended for the following characters: Frankie, Lizzie, Terrence, Fergus, and, of course, James?

I’m glad that Lizzie and Eileen were reunited and that her return even seemed to perk up their mother.  Terrence must still be living with a lot of guilt, and while I don’t like that Frankie was injured so badly, I think returning him to a happy child is a good ending for him.  He was far to angry, and its tough to come back from that even if you have an epiphany.  Fergus….ah, Fergus…not sure what to say about him.  I like that he was taking matters into his own hands, but I don’t like that he put Eileen in the position she was in.  James got his just desserts.

Were you satisfied with the way things ended for Eileen’s mom?

Yes and no.  Maybe there is hope for her yet.

And, lastly, were you happy with how things ended for Eileen?

Eileen needs to now learn how to be happy and not wallow in self-pity and all of that.  She deserved her happy ending.

About the Author:

Patricia Falvey was born in Newry, County Down, Northern Ireland. She was raised in Northern Ireland and England before immigrating to the U.S. at the age of twenty. She currently divides her time between Dallas, Texas and Northern Ireland.



This is my 2nd book for the 2012 Ireland Reading Challenge.



This is my 9th book for the WWI Reading Challenge.




This is my 21st book for the 2012 New Authors Challenge.