#61 – Ellis Island – Kate Kerrigan

Sweethearts since childhood, Ellie Hogan and her husband, John, are content on their farm in Ireland—until John, a soldier for the Irish Republican Army, receives an injury that leaves him unable to work. Forced to take drastic measures in order to survive, Ellie does what so many Irish women in the 1920s have done and sails across a vast ocean to New York City to work as a maid for a wealthy socialite.

Once there, Ellie is introduced to a world of opulence and sophistication, tempted by the allure of grand parties and fine clothes, money and mansions . . . and by the attentions of a charming suitor who can give her everything. Yet her heart remains with her husband back home. And now she faces the most difficult choice she will ever have to make: a new life in a new country full of hope and promise, or return to a life of cruel poverty . . . and love. – Publishers Website

From page one, it is clearly clear that Kate has talent.  From the first beginnings in Ireland to the big city of New York, she delves into important issues that still plague us in the 21st century – love, hope, forgiveness, money, as well as a few others that you can imagine.  She slowly guides you into the early 1900’s when war is raging, her husband is injured, they need a way to make money to be able to keep their house and land.  She discovers that she can travel to America to become a servant.  She is conflicted as she leaves her country to a brand new place in the world.  But, as she gets used to her new surroundings, she is torn – America or Ireland, Her Husband back home – A new man in her life.  Would she give up her life in Ireland for one in America that is filled with opulence and security?  I won’t tell you how it ended, but it is clear that she will be quite happy with whatever she is doing.  I really enjoyed this novel.

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