Book Review: The Daughters of Ireland by Santa Montefiore

August 22, 2017 historical, Santa Montefiore 9

about the book

Ireland. 1925.

The war is over. But life will never be the same…

In the green hills of West Cork, Ireland, Castle Deverill has burned to the ground. But young Celia Deverill is determined to see her ruined ancestral home restored to its former glory — to the years when Celia ran through its vast halls with her cousin Kitty and their childhood friend Bridie Doyle.

Kitty herself is raising a young family, but she longs for Jack O’Leary — the long-ago sweetheart she cannot have. And soon Kitty must make a heartbreaking decision, one that could destroy everything she holds dear.

Bridie, once a cook’s daugher in Castle Deverill, is now a well-heeled New York City socialite. Yet her celebrity can’t erase a past act that haunts her still. Nor can it keep her from seeking revenge upon the woman who wronged her all those years ago.

As these three daughters of Ireland seek to make their way in a world once again beset by dark forces, Santa Montefiore shows us once more why she is one of the best-loved storytellers at work today.

“Everything Santa Montefiore writes, she writes from the heart,” says JOJO MOYES. See why in this unforgettable story of love, loss, and life, perfect for fans of DOWNTON ABBEY and KATE MORTON.

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SERIES: Deverill Chronicles #2
GENRE: Historical Fiction
PUBLISHER: William Morrow Paperbacks
RELEASE DATE: August 15, 2017
PAGES: 576

Other Books In This Series

I really enjoyed the first book in this series – The Girl in the Castle – so I was eager to read book 2 and catch up on all the characters.  And while the writing style is again gorgeous and the story is again rich with history, I found myself disappointed in all of the characters whom I thought so compelling in book 1.

The story weaves between three main locales – as well as a couple of time periods – and Montefiore does an exceptional job of capturing the mood and personality of each place. From West Cork Ireland to London to New York City and even a brief jaunt to South Africa, readers get a front row seat to culture and struggles in each of these places. The fact that it also spans a wide time period – from the cusp of the Great Depression to the brink of World War 1 – adds even more dimension to the narrative.

Unfortunately, there isn’t a single main character I could embrace in this novel. The characters whose stories intrigued me most in The Girl in the Castle grew into unlikable people in The Daughters of Ireland. Affairs, bitterness, debauchery, betrayal, revenge … all designed to evoke sympathy from the reader, I suppose, but for me it just came across as depressing and unsatisfying.  Honestly, I didn’t even care what happened to any of them after a certain point lol.

Bottom Line:  I realize that, given all the rave reviews on Goodreads, my opinion is in the minority so don’t necessarily take my word as gospel here. The Daughters of Ireland is on the one hand a beautifully written, sweeping saga of family and friends and heritage. On the other hand, it is filled with characters who make one bad choice after another until all the bad piles up and outweighs the good.

(I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the publisher. All views expressed are only my honest opinion.)

My Rating: 3 stars / Mixed feelings

Reviewer’s Note: Readers may want to be aware that this book contains some profanities throughout, as well as intimacies and scenes that I chose not to read and would not recommend for my ‘clean reads’ audience.

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HarperCollins

about the author

Santa Montefiore was born in England. She went to Sherborne School for Girls in Dorset and studied Spanish and Italian at Exeter University. She has written sixteen bestselling novels, which have been translated into thirty different languages and have sold more than two million copies worldwide.

Find out more about Santa at her website, and connect with her Facebook. You can also join the Facebook group dedicated to her books.

Carrie

9 Responses to “Book Review: The Daughters of Ireland by Santa Montefiore”

  1. Paula S.

    I appreciate the review. I think I will sit this one out. Thanks Carrie!

  2. Vivian Furbay

    The Daughters of Ireland sound like a really good book with interesting characters. Enjoyed the review and your blog Carrie.