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Gracelin O'Malley (Gracelin O'Malley #1)

4.16  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,377 Ratings  ·  209 Reviews
Nineteenth-century Ireland was a place of harsh suffering and haunting beauty, of famine and fortune, of tragedy and triumph. This rich, evocative novel captures the dreams of one extraordinary young woman who lived through those dark times--and found hope for the future....
Paperback, 432 pages
Published March 2nd 2004 by Signet (first published 2001)
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Sep 29, 2014 Erin rated it it was amazing
Find this and other reviews at: http://flashlightcommentary.blogspot....

I think every reviewer has a list. Books they read before they began to chronicle their thoughts, titles that haunt their memory. My list is remarkably short, but Ann Moore's Gracelin O'Malley has topped it for the better part of the last three years which is why I jumped at the opportunity to review it as a new release when the book was reprinted by Open Road Media.

For the record, I don't think the description does Grace a
Nov 11, 2014 Lori rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
I just finished this and my mind is still reeling. I'm not even sure I can express in words how wonderful this novel is. It never ceases to amaze me the talent some authors have in literally immersing reads into their stories. That it how it felt reading Gracelin O'Malley. I am so thankful that this is being rereleased because it truly is one of the best books I have read. I don't think I'll ever be able to hear Irish melodies again without a tear coming to my eye.
Angela M
Sep 15, 2014 Angela M rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I knew from the first paragraph that I was going to be pulled into this story. As soon as I read this, it was impossible to put down:

"Campfire flickered in the woods along the far bank of the River Lee. It was early spring and the tinkers had come. If they had waited but another day, they would not have witnessed the terrible thing that happened there, nor saved the life of young Sean from down the glen, a boy whose mother never let them pass without half a loaf and a good word.”

Some things alm
Gracelin O'Malley is a story of Ireland in the middle of the 19th century, a time of British rule, poverty, varying crop failures and blights and slowly growing Irish rage in a powerless population. Grace herself lives a life that experiences it all: she is born an Irish Protestant child with best friends across the religious divide. She marries an English Squire in an arranged marriage she hopes will help her family. But nothing will help anyone when the potato blight strikes.

The strongest aspe
Jan 05, 2013 Janae rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely loved this story! Beautifully written. The characters are very enduring....especially Grace. With so much heartache all around her at every step, she remained strong and resolute. I could hardly put this down. I look forward to getting my hands on the next two books and continue continue on with the story of Gracelin O'Malley.
This is the first book of the trilogy on Gracelin O'Malley saga.

The historical background covers the Great Famine of 1845 in Ireland. The plot tells the story of Gracelin and her family. When she was 16-years old, she marries an English landlord, Bram Donnelly and then her life is in constant turmoil due to the violent character of her husband.

In the meantime, her brother Sean and her childhood friend Morgan McDonagh became part of Young Irish rebels trying to save Ireland from British dependenc
May 08, 2009 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2009
I can't wait to read the other two books in this series. I instantly fell for the main character, Grace, who we first meet as a young girl in Ireland. I am a relatively new fan of historical fiction and found this story of the Irish struggle for freedom from England and the famine/epidemic-ridden years surrounding that to be very captivating and extremely readable. The author clearly did her research and is a wonderful storyteller- I never felt bogged down by details. I could hear the Irish voic ...more
The Baking Bookworm
Disclaimer: My sincere thanks to Open Road Integrated Media and NetGalley for providing me with a complimentary e-book copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

My Review: I've been on the lookout for a great, sweeping historical saga of a read lately and I haven't quite been able to find it. Until now.

Gracelin O'Malley gives a wonderfully vivid (and often distressing) description of life in Ireland during one of the famines where not only did the Irish have to deal with extreme poverty
Jun 03, 2008 Barb rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-in-2008, ireland
I have to say that I was disappointed by this book. I think that perhaps all of the rave reviews I read lead me to expect an amazing story with amazing writing and I just didn't think it was that great.

I thought that the character development was on the light side and the story was very predictable, cliché even. I was never surprised by anything that happened. And there was a lack of tension throughout that made me feel like I could leave these characters and this story and not miss them or the
Jan 20, 2011 TJ rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: historical, clean
Amazing book! A beautifully written, heart-wrenching but riveting story. One that teaches and deepens understanding while still entertaining. It chronicles the life of a young Irish woman during the great potato famine of the 1800s. Through her experiences we live the love, the desperation, the determination, the hardships, and the pride of a people neglected into near extinction. We also see the indomitable human spirit and its ability to rise above even the worst that this world can require. W ...more
Sep 26, 2014 Marialyce rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book was wonderful. It had all the makings of a terrific love story as well as blending in the historical background of Ireland during the tyrannical British rule in the 1850's.
Sep 25, 2012 Meg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I guess I do have a thing for depressing books...sometimes. If they are written with heart and class. I felt that Gracelin O'Malley fit into this category. From the start it read like a true Irish story, lilting and mesmerizing. It didn't have the over the top Irish expressions, just a good Irish "feel" to it. Taking place in the 1800's during the potato famine, it couldn't help being depressing, yet the characters were richly written, strong and heroic. If you enjoy Irish history you will enjoy ...more
Apr 18, 2016 Ilaria rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Povertà e ricchezza sono condizioni dell'anima. E a qualunque uomo può capitare la disgrazia di uno spirito impoverito."

Terra perduta è il primo romanzo di una trilogia tutta ambientata nell'Irlanda di metà Ottocento. La protagonista della storia è Grace O'Malley, la figlia quindicenne di Patrick O'Malley. Gli O'Malley vivono in una casa modesta e coltivano una terra che non gli appartiene e che non potranno mai riscattare, tutto il territorio circostante appartiene ai Donnelly, aristocratici i
Sherry H
You know I love historical fiction, and since I have a wee bit o' the Irish in me, when I saw Lori's review of this one, it was hard to resist jumping right in.

Of course, any story of 19th-century Ireland is bound to contain strong, multi-generation families, a love of the land, and a deep, abiding faith, not to mention cabbages and potatoes. To that, add a beautiful young heroine with real strength and a sparkle in her eye who captures the eye of a handsome squire, and I thought this would be a
Disclaimer: ARC read via Netgalley.

There is a place that Ireland holds in the imagination and lives of almost everyone, even those who are not Irish. Perhaps it is the constant invasion or the struggle for freedom or the similarities to situations in non-European parts of the world. Perhaps it is simply a fondness for the beer transforming to a fondness for the country. Who knows? It is possible to meet people who know next to nothing about history but know about the potato famine in Ireland. T
Jun 27, 2008 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
A really great story - very inspiring. Didn't so much care for the Ireland political uprising backstory and the sad ending, but I did appreciate that the author did a lot of research to bring that time period to life in a very vivid way. Can't wait to read #2 and #3 in the series. Reccommended for those who enjoy a good historical fiction.
The Lit Bitch
Oct 30, 2014 The Lit Bitch rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I would classify this novel more as a family saga/historic fiction/Christian fiction/romance, rather than strictly a romance. There were romantic elements in the book but I don’t know that it was enough for me to consider it a true romance. There were also aspects of it that could classify it as Christian fiction as well. Faith played a large part in the novel as a way of helping the characters through difficult times.

Because it was marketed as a romance, I guess I was expecting more romance. Th
Dec 30, 2010 Michele rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It may be that just returning from Ireland, I found all kinds of places and cultural and historical events that I had recently heard of or seen that made this book appealing. I think I will be the next two books in the trilogy because I want to see what Grace's life has in store for her.
A miserable and depressing book, along the lines of Les Misérables. However, it was an excellent insight into the harsh realities of the Irish Potato Famine.

My heart bled for these poor (literally) people, reduced to penury and illiteracy by the ruling class of England, forced to produce rent to the landowners from ruined crops. I wonder if I would have been as generous and good as Grace under similar circumstances, or as brave and selfless as Morgan.

The writing and flow were good, the charact
Feb 22, 2013 Maudie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Bravo, Ann Moore, for giving us Gracelin O'Malley and all those who inhabit her glorious and tragic Ireland. The wee people are smiling on ye!
James Martin
Aug 16, 2015 James Martin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
GRACELIN O'MALLEY is a wonderfully emotional and fact-infused epic of Ireland in the 1840s. It's packed with heroic (and villainous) characters caught up in the years of widespread famine and fever. Gracelin abruptly comes of age amidst great personal and political turmoil. The core of the story, with its passionate, unforgettable characters, centers around love, loyalty, patriotism and~as in most things Irish~hearth, home, and heart. Reading it (maybe with a spot of tea) is an excursion through ...more
We live in a time of affluence and plenty. That fact was never more at the forefront of my mind than when I was reading “Gracelin O’Malley“ by Ann Moore.

Set during the horrific years of the Irish Potato Famine in the late 1840s, the novel depicted in excruciating prose the dire circumstances of the Irish with what is (to us who take civil liberty and plenty to eat for granted) unimaginable deprivation and hardship.

The secondary characters of the novel are well rendered and for the most part sym
Dec 03, 2014 Marcie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I don't know how to describe this book. It was heartbreakingly sad, but also completely riveting, I couldn't put it down. Gracelin O'Malley is a woman who is a survivor. After losing her mother when she was just a child, Gracelin becomes the caretaker of the O'Malley's modest home. When she's old enough to marry, she's married to a wealthy landowner. Reluctant at first, she knows this marriage will help her family in a way that nothing else could. But this isn't a fairy tale. It's a nightmare. H ...more
Judi/Judith Riddle
Gracelin O'Malley, an Irish beauty, in 1840s Ireland, worked hard to keep her family together but the times are hard and so her father makes a land deal with Squire Donnelly for her hand in marriage. Gracelin is horrified but decides to make the best of it and goes willingly into the marriage with high hopes of success. At first, the Squire is gentle and kind but as the marriage progressed, his true colors surfaced and Gracelin's life turned into a nightmare. She knew that he wanted one thing an ...more
May 09, 2009 Becky rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My neighbor loaned me this book to read because I told her about our trip to Ireland. It is a historical novel set in Ireland during the 1840's. The book was very well written and obviously well researched. Gracelin's experiences seemed very real and yes, I even cried (at least once). The reason I didn't give it more stars is because it was SO real. I'm a girl that loves things to work out in the end and for all the characters to get what they deserve, usually a happy ending. Well, reading about ...more
Kathy Maggiacomo

I liked this book. I read the third book first and I liked the third book better but I enjoyed the characters so I decided to read the other books. I really believe schools should teach history through novels. I knew about the potato famine in Ireland but I never knew anything about England owning the land and how rent worked. I am excited now to learn more about "real" history after reading this book. I often take for granted the fact we have food and shelter and we never go without anything.
Jan 30, 2009 Diane rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a wonderful novel of passion and history during a turbulent period in Irish history.

Gracelin O'Malley is the heart of the story. This woman, along with her countrymen, experience so much hardship in this novel but have such optimism in the face of extreme poverty and despair. They find their spirit and joy in trying to live each day, in loving their children and the pride they express in their heritage.

At the centre of this story is self-sacrifice. It is evident throughout the many red
Jul 05, 2010 Ariana rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Was für ein blöder deutscher Titel! Man erwartet ein kitschiges Frauenbuch mit ein wenig historischem Hintergrund. Was man bekommt, ist aber viel besser: "Gracelin O'Malley" (so der englische Originaltitel) ist ein packend geschriebener Roman über die Irland-Problematik aus Sicht einer Irin, die mit einem englischen Grundbesitzer verheiratet wird, deren Herz aber Irland gehört.
Eindringlich und in z. T. recht ernüchternden Bildern wird die Great Famine beschrieben, ebenso die erstarkende Untergru
This was another great historical fiction, taking place in Ireland, during the great potato famine. Gracelin O'Malley is a kind, strong willed, beautiful girl married off to a squire who turns out to be a not so nice guy. The story revolves around her, her family and close friends, most of whom are caught up in the uprising against the English. Beautifully written. I can't wait to read the next two.
Note of warning- there are some rather descriptive scenes of domestic abuse along with graphic de
Sep 10, 2013 Susanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Susanne by: Marla Cosner
An amazing novel. I keep flipping back and forth between giving this four and five stars! I hesitate giving it five stars because I usually reserve those for books I would love to read again. And while this was amazing I don't know I would pick it up again. It is a book that makes me so grateful for health and strength and plenty. I sometimes felt like I'd like to have some of the other characters more developed. It is amazing the faith that can see a people through so much trial as well. This i ...more
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The Book Travelers: March 2016 -- Gracelin O'Malley, by Ann Moore 1 2 Apr 04, 2016 08:23AM  
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  • The Love Knot
  • The Winter Rose (The Tea Rose, #2)
  • The Linen Queen
  • The Irish Princess
  • Ireland's Pirate Queen: The True Story of Grace O'Malley, 1530-1603
  • Irish Lady
  • Jubilee Trail
  • Sawbones
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Ann Moore was raised in the misty Pacific Northwest, and spent a good many summers roaming the beaches of a nearby island. Internationally published, Ann is the author of three historical novels about the 1845 Irish Famine, the Young Irelander uprising, and the Irish emigration to America. Her fourth novel - a contemporary mystery, set on a remote island in the San Juans - is nearly done. Ann live ...more
More about Ann Moore...

Other Books in the Series

Gracelin O'Malley (3 books)
  • Leaving Ireland
  • 'Til Morning Light

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