*Book source ~ Many thanks to the author for providing a review copy in exchange for an honest review.
In 1880 Rose Sullivan left her home in Skibbereen Ireland and sailed to America with her cousin Mary. Another cousin, Kate, had gone to America years ago and she made enough money to send home so that her family lived like royalty in the poverty stricken country. She wrote and told Kate and Mary that she could get them jobs as serving girls in the household where she works. So Rose and Mary left the only home they knew and crossed an ocean to America.
I thought it was a bit strange that the evening before Rose and Mary left there was a party to see them off. That wasn’t the strange part. It was called an American Wake. Why call it a wake? I guess because family, friends and neighbors figured the girls (or whoever the party was for) were never coming back. So, even though Rose plans to return in 10 years, they were given an American Wake. Fascinating.
This short story is part one in a series documenting Rose’s life after she leaves Ireland, docks in Philadelphia and ends up as a serving girl in a rich man’s home in Pittsburgh. At her party she meets a handsome mysterious 16-year-old boy/man named Sean McCarthy. They talk, he kisses her and then he walks away. Rose spends a lot of time thinking of him on her journey to America and even after though she’s so busy working she falls asleep exhausted. The ending is a cliffhanger as Rose’s life takes a serious turn. What is she going to do now? Very well-written and I’m looking forward to reading more about Rose’s story.