EXCERPT: ‘Nellie Butler . . . Your great-aunt, was she?’
‘That’s right. On my father’s side. I only met her once.’
‘Interesting woman,’ Sorcha said. ‘Talk about rough times. She had them in spades. During the war, I mean. But she was a bit of a heroine, too, I believe.’
‘Really?’ Lydia looked at Sorcha, wanting to know more. ‘In what way?’
‘I don’t really know. I can just tell you what I’ve heard. There was an old man in the village who knew everything about everybody, but he passed away last winter. Mad Brennan he was called. Not mad at all. Very sharp, actually. He told me once that your Aunt Nellie was a spy, but I think he was joking.’
Lydia laughed. ‘A spy?’
‘I know,’ Sorcha said. ‘That’s impossible. What kind of spying could she have done around here? He was pulling my leg as usual. He loved having people on.’
ABOUT ‘THE LOST GIRLS OF IRELAND’: The picturesque beach of Wild Rose Bay is the last place Lydia Butler thought she’d be. But having just lost everything, the run-down cottage she inherited from her Great Aunt Nellie is the only place she can take her daughter, Sunny. Hidden away in a tiny Irish village, she can protect Sunny from the gossip in Dublin, and the real reason they have nowhere else to live…
The cottage is part of the old coastguard station and other eccentric residents are quick to introduce themselves when Lydia arrives. Lydia instantly feels less alone, fascinated by the stories they have about Nellie, and she’s charmed by American artist, Jason O’Callaghan, the mysterious man who lives next door.
But the longer Lydia relaxes under the moonlit sky, the more the secret she’s keeping from Sunny threatens to come out. And as she finds herself running into Jason’s arms, she knows she must be honest and face up to the past she has tried to forget. Has she finally found people who will truly accept her, or will the truth force her to leave the cottage for good?
MY THOUGHTS: This is a fairly predictable romance that missed the opportunity to capitalize on a family mystery and move the whole book up a level. Why speculate about Great Aunt Nellie if you’re not going to follow it through? She was by far the most interesting character, the one with the most potential, and there was definitely the opportunity to run her story concurrently with Lydia’s.
I really failed to connect with any of the characters and the plot was very thin, lacking in substance. I also didn’t get the relevance of the title.
If you are looking for a (very) light romance, The Lost Girls of Ireland will fit the bill admirably. Personally, I prefer a little more depth.
I: @susanne.olearyauthor @bookouture
T: @susl @bookouture
#contemporaryfiction #familydrama #irishfiction #romance #womensfiction
THE AUTHOR: Susanne O’Leary is the bestselling author of 22 novels, mainly in the romantic fiction genre. She has also written three crime novels and two in the historical fiction genre. She has been the wife of a diplomat (still is), a fitness teacher and a translator. She now writes full-time from either of two locations, a ramshackle house in County Tipperary, Ireland or a little cottage overlooking the Atlantic in Dingle, County Kerry. When she is not scaling the mountains of said counties (including MacGillycuddy’s Reeks, featured in Full Irish), or keeping fit in the local gym, she keeps writing, producing a book every six months.
DISCLOSURE: Thank you to Bookouture via Netgalley for providing a digital ARC of The Lost Girls of Ireland by Susanne O’Leary for review. All opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own personal opinions.
For an explanation of my rating system please refer to my Goodreads.com profile page or the about page on sandysbookaday.wordpress.com
This review and others are also published on Twitter, Amazon, Instagram and Goodreads.com