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This is a book which you sink back into your chair and just listen to .... allowing it to wash over you in musical waves of texture and poetry. I started listening to it and by the time 45 minutes were past, I already hoped that there were more books out. Maybe it's just the narrator's voice.
When I first started listening to this, I thought it would be a Tom Sawyer/Huck Finn sort of book. But it isn't. It's a story of two young men growing up during the first world war and the Irish Troubles. Connor is the quiet one, dreaming of traveling the world while keeping his head down and slogging through life. Rory is his brother, hotheaded and believing in the Irish tales of Brian Boru and the Fenian raids; wanting to fight for Irish independence with the Sinn Fein, the rise of the IRA. It's this hotheadedness that shapes the story. Love also shapes this story. Love of country, of history, of family, and of a girl. Its about sacrifices, two generations of families intertwined by politics and by love, and the history they have to live with.
This story will bring tears to your eyes and a lump to your throat. Well written, well narrated, I look forward to more by this author and narrator. Please!!
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Fenian's Trace is an outstanding well written historical fiction story by Sean P. Mahoney. Through its pages we learn of one small village's struggles with the British occupation of Ireland leading up to the Easter Rebellion and ultimately Ireland's independence in 1921.
The story begins in 1901 Limerick with two young brothers who desire to do nothing more than hitch a ride on a canal boat carting barrels of Guinness. As the years roll by, they eventually succeed in riding on that boat and along the way they meet some very interesting men who enjoy telling stories of Irish heroes and legends. As teens, their interests start to veer in different directions and they fall in love with the same girl. Eventually they choose different paths dealing with the rebellion.One passionately acts out against the English occupation (like all of the great legends before him), and the other takes the path of a pacifist, all the while remaining loyal and true to his family and the other villagers. It goes without saying that sacrifices are made which are utterly heartbreaking. [The last 1/3 of the book is truly moving and brought me to tears more than once.]
I listened to the audible version of Finian's Trace narrated by Liam Carney, who is a well known and resepected actor. His warm husky voice and gravely tones were ideal to portray a gruff old Limerick pub owner who enjoys the grand tradition of Irish storytellers. I enjoyed it so much, I hope someone from Hollywood reads it and makes a movie out of it, like they did with Frank McCourt's Angela Ashes in 1999. In summary, I higjly recommend this book!