Saturday, June 11, 2016

O'er the River Liffey (Power of the Matchmaker) by Heidi Ashworth

O'er the River Liffey by Heidi Ashworth

Summary from Goodreads:
Irish heiress Caroline Fulton knows this house party, ostensibly celebrating the victory of Waterloo, is really an audition: will she make a suitable wife? Her host, an English lord, has already won over her father, who’s determined to buy a title with Caroline’s dowry. She is far from taken with the baron, however, especially once she meets Niall Doherty, the impoverished, perceptive tutor to her host’s younger brothers. He shares her love of Irish fairy tales and seems to guard a troubled past…but neither quality will earn Caroline’s father’s approval. 

4 Stars

Received an ebook in exchange for an honest review.

My Review:
I have not read very much historical fiction set in Ireland. It is fun to jump in to another time and place and Ireland is a great place to jump! There is vocabulary to learn!

The Prologue is a bit confusing to me. For some reason, I have a hard time understanding who the characters are and how they are relating to each other. However, this is where we meet the Matchmaker! Unlike most of the other stories, this is the only place the Matchmaker, Miss Pearl, appears in person. She is referred to at other times in the book. (I did have to refer back to the Prologue later in the book to remember and understand better what had happened there).

Niall and Caroline make a good pair. They are both open to believing in fairy tales and Irish myths. They both enjoy spending time doing "fun" things, not traditional to the staid practices of the Irish and English gentry. They both see themselves as outsiders in their own ways.

There are some excellent secondary characters. I love the brothers and Caroline's best friend, Fiona. Oppositely, I hate Caroline's father. He is an excellent antagonist. My heart breaks several times in this book. That being said, there are wonderful moments of joy as well.

I particularly like when the characters leave the confines of the house party. Both Niall and Caroline have to struggle, but they are able to find a freedom through that struggle that allows them to pursue their own course in life. I like reading about people who are strong, who take their lives in to their own hands, often times at great sacrifice. 

Here is a fun account of  the "birth" of the cover on Heidi Ashworth's Blog. I enjoyed reading it.

Warnings: None

I would let my 15 year old read this book.

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