Author: Sheila O'Flanagan
Published by: Headline Books on Jun. 6, 2023
Genres: Historical Fiction
Format: ARC, Paperback
Source: Mobius Books US
Book Rating: 8.5/10
Dublin. The 1920s. As war tears Ireland apart, two young people are caught up in events that will bring love, tragedy – and the hardest of choices.
In a country fighting for freedom, it’s hard to live a normal life. Winnie O’Leary supports the cause, but she doesn’t go looking for trouble. Then rebel Joseph Burke steps into her workplace. Winnie is furious with him about a broken window. She’s not interested in romance. But love comes when you least expect it.
Joseph’s family shelter fugitives and transport weapons. Joseph would never ask Winnie to join the fight; but his mother and sisters demand commitment. Will Winnie choose Joseph, and put her own loved ones in deadly danger? Or wait for a time of peace that may never come?
Ireland’s tumultuous independence struggle is the backdrop for an unforgettable story of courage and heartbreak, in which heroes are made of ordinary people. Inspired by the story of Sheila O’Flanagan’s grandmother, The Woman on the Bridge is the unmissable, compulsive new novel from a bestselling author.
Tender, nostalgic, and immersive!
The Woman on the Bridge is an intriguing tale that sweeps you away to Dublin during the 1920s when Ireland is full of unrest and upheaval and the sweet, dependable Winnie O’Leary and her rebel husband-to-be, Joseph Burke, have to navigate a world full of simmering anger, violence, imprisonments, and tragic losses of life before finally making it to the altar.
The prose is polished and rich. The characters are passionate, driven, and endearing. And the well-paced, compelling plot is a wonderful mix of familial dynamics, drama, emotion, self-discovery, secrets, revelations, love, loss, heartbreak, courage, duty, grief, passion, and conflict.
Overall, The Woman on the Bridge is an atmospheric, absorbing, heartfelt debut in the historical fiction genre for O’Flanagan that does a beautiful job of highlighting her exceptional ability to portray complex, memorable characters, which in this case are based on real-life family members, and historically troubling times in such a way that is not only insightful but also impactful.
This novel is available now.
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Thank you to Mobius Books US for gifting me a copy in exchange for an honest review.