The Rebels of Ireland (The Dublin Saga, #2)
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The Rebels of Ireland (The Dublin Saga #2)

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4.03 of 5 stars 4.03  ·  rating details  ·  3,002 ratings  ·  229 reviews
The reigning master of grand historical fiction returns with the stirring conclusion to his bestselling Dublin Saga.

The Princes of Ireland, the first volume of Edward Rutherfurd’s magisterial epic of Irish history, ended with the disastrous Irish revolt of 1534 and the disappearance of the sacred Staff of Saint Patrick. The Rebels of Ireland opens with an Ireland transform...more
Kindle Edition, 896 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Ballantine Books (first published February 1st 2004)
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Charlotte
Mar 20, 2008 Charlotte rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone who loved Trinity and Redemption; those who study Irish heritage
I loved this book! In fact, I loved the two book series. As one who studies Irish culture and history, I found this series of books to be not only entertaining, but educational, as well. Though not as dearly loved as Trinity by Leon Uris (lets face it, no one can beat Conor Larkin as an Irish hero,)this book covers that same period of time with a few additional centuries thrown in. I did find that I had to review the family tree on several occasions, as the multiple family connections became com...more
Kristin
On one hand, I really like Rutherfurd's style of telling history. By following the same families through hundreds of years, it's possible to see how the country changed over time and how those changes affected generations of real people from different backgrounds. On the other hand, it is so frustrating to start feeling close to a character only to suddenly shift 40 years in the future, where that character is dead and his children are middle-aged. There were also many characters I wanted to kno...more
Tim
Nice chronicle covering three centuries of Ireland's past right up to the Easter uprising in 1916 and the island's independence in 1921.

Rutherfurd's history sweepers are engrossing and challenging (Sarum, Russka). This one is no exception. I knew about the Catholic and Protestant divide over the centuries, but had no idea just how convoluted, murky, and ultimately intertwined it was. Family landlords, Old English Gentry, the Ascendancy, name changes, families deliberately deciding to make some c...more
Liz
Tells the peculiar history of Ireland through 2 long books. The first, Princes of Ireland, is fabulous, old tribes, princes feuds and the obligatory pair of flashing green eyes that threads through both books and centuries! I listened to this one, very entertaining and informative. I understand more of the "troubles".
Patsy
This sweeping (and I mean sweeping) epic of Irish history is the 2nd in a series. It's very ambitious covering a period from the late 16th century to the early 20th century. Great writing and interesting history make it an enjoyable read but it's almost too ambitious! I'm in the last 50 pages and am looking forward to being done! The most interesting angle of this history - one which I never fully understood -is how and why the religious rifts occurred in Ireland. I also learned the "old English...more
Glyn Longden
Rating: 7/10. The second book of 'The Dublin Saga; the first was 'The Princes of Ireland' which I read in Feb./06. I also read Rutherfurd's 'London' which was excellent. In this fictional account the English take over Ireland lock, stock, and barrel. After reading the accounts of British oppression you can understand completely why the Irish hate the English so much. Rutherfurd's style is like Micheners...a story at each level or time period. Very effective. I enjoyed both books in this series a...more
Sean Kennedy
I know the political history of Ireland is a complex one, but this second volume of the Dublin saga seems to think long plodding scenes of political discourse are more interesting than the human angle. It's absolutely bizarre that the Famine, the Diaspora and the Easter Uprising are all dealt with in the last hundred and fifty pages when you could have gotten a lengthy novel out of just one of those events alone.

Indeed, the end is so rushed that one feels shortchanged after 1800-odd pages. Are...more
Milt
It was a very good read indeed. It defines both the chartacter of the Irish and the duplicity of the English with a balanced point of view and a good story sense.
Frances
Simply magnificent. The convoluted, tragic history of Ireland is done justice in this epic book. Impossible to summarize so just read it.
Esmee Whitaker
Repetitive and tedious, I did not find it very well written and opted to stop reading after the first 300-odd pages [of over 800]. Characters seemed superficial, and re-appeared in subsequent generations as "new" characters. Lots of warring between Catholic and Protestant factions [kings/rulers, groups of citizens, etc]. Lost track of who was in power a number of times, as it didn't seem relevant to the action.

However, I know a couple of rabid fans of Rutherford, so perhaps this is just not to...more
Thom Swennes
This book, like its prequel “The Princes of Ireland” (Dublin), was published under another title. “The Rebels of Ireland came out under the title “Ireland Awakening”. The reasoning behind the various titles isn’t really clear to me but the ability of the author to spin a yarn is without dispute. This book takes the Irish State from free, proud and independent peoples to a nation enslaved, degraded, starved and finally divided. Every story has many sides and this is just one of the faceted views....more
Sue

The reigning master of grand historical fiction returns with the stirring conclusion to his bestselling Dublin Saga.

The Princes of Ireland, the first volume of Edward Rutherfurd’s magisterial epic of Irish history, ended with the disastrous Irish revolt of 1534 and the disappearance of the sacred Staff of Saint Patrick. The Rebels of Ireland opens with an Ireland transformed; plantation, the final step in the centuries-long English conquest of Ireland, is the order of the day, and the subjugati...more
Manu Prasad
The second part of Rutherford's Ireland saga. Starting in 1597 and ending in 1922, it continues to trace the life and times of the six families first presented in Dublin, and adds a few more. It starts with the Reformation, the arrival of Oliver Cromwell and the Ascendancy.
Rutherford, as usual, combines the lives of fictitious and real characters, like Henry Grattan and Daniel O'Connell, and tackles the famine, Home Rule movement etc to present a picture that justifies what might have been the...more
Rob
A great conclusion to part 1 of the Dublin Saga, the 'Rebels of Ireland' picks up where the 'Princes of Ireland' ended. Although you do not necessarily have to read part 1 to begin readin part 2. I do think the 'Princes of Ireland' was a slightly better read.

This book takes you through the religous backdrop of Ireland's more recent history. It gives an informative look at the English influence over Ireland and the protestant - catholic relationships. The story of the potatoe famine is also a big...more
Tricia
I am finding this book more fluid than the Princes. I started it around July 12. I have finally finished, however I did 3 conferences, knit a baby vest and booties, a sweater in intarsia and a table runner for a wedding gift. I also put out the news letter for Larse. SO, it is no wonder that it took me a little longer to get through this. At the same time I was reading this I was using the book Illustrated History of the Irish People by Kenneth Neill as a companion. I could see pictures of the c...more
rabbitprincess
Nov 21, 2010 rabbitprincess rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: those who read and enjoyed The Princes of Ireland
Shelves: 2010, from-me-to-me
A wholehearted four stars for the sequel to the very good The Princes of Ireland. I probably enjoyed Rebels slightly more than Princes because I had Princes to warm up with and become accustomed to Rutherfurd's style and storytelling method.

This book covers the period between 1534 and the 1920s, ending with the creation of the Irish Free State. There's a lot of ground to cover, particularly in the 1700s, but Rutherfurd's writing smoothly moves along through the ages and you hardly notice the pas...more
Victoria Hess
Edward Rutherford structures his epic historical novels over long periods of time, following families of different classes through their lives at important times during the centuries covered. Irish history was so full of struggle that he had to use two books to cover it from early Celtic times through the early 20th century. This book is the second of the two volumes split the story into, covering roughly the 16th century to the 20th.

These books are not for you if you want to get attached to a c...more
Shalynn Ford Womack
Edward Rutherfurd's remarkable attention to detail, elegant prose, and historical accuracy brought "The Rebels of Ireland" to life in such a poignant manner that I was in turns, moved to tears, outraged, deeply saddened, and actually shocked by the struggles of my ancestors.

Having traveled to Ireland recently, I was amazed at how much of 16th century Dublin remains intact, despite repeated attempts by England to conquer, divide, redistribute, and even destroy the ancient island. St. Patrick's C...more
Katherine Coble
I'd set this aside several times, and was determined that I'd read it this year for St. Patrick's Day. I think it's safe to say that this is my second-favourite Rutherfurd, after Sarum. The characters' stories that we follow through the river of Ireland's history are good ones; they are compelling enough to keep you coming back even through the darker historic times.

Still, this is an intense book. I recommend it for anyone interested in brushing up on Ireland's history from 1500-1900, yet I cau...more
Jean
A three hundred year saga of several families trying to survive the political, religious and economic tides of southern Ireland. The book takes place mainly in a small village south of Dublin called Rathconan. The author covers so much history that I had to read the book twice. Otherwise I would give it a higher rating, but much I did not grasp the first time through. The fictional families continue to surface during each historic period in this saga, but their stories are very probable of the I...more
Jehan
When I turned the last page of Rutherford's The Princes of Ireland and saw the advertisement for the sequel, I ran out and bought it the next day, excited for what was to come next. I was not disappointed. This sweeping novel brought the history of Ireland into the present, told through the interconnected lives of everyday people.

What I love about Rutherford is that he tells his stories from so many perspectives; for instance, instead of the typical take on the Easter Rising of 1916 and the War...more
Sammy
So obviously I haven't spent the last, God knows how many months reading this book. Rather I've spent the last few months being very busy with a lack of time able to review. With that being said, some of the reviews to come are going to have to be short and sweet because I don't remember details specific enough to really nit-pick (which I'm sure many of you will be grateful about).

Once again you're really going to have to focus and put your full attention on this book when reading it. It's still...more
Bart Breen
Irish History Comes to Life!

After having read Rutherford's earlier volume in this Historical Fiction series, I was anticipating a good solid effort that would provide an entertaining read with the added bonus of some grounding in Irish History. This book provided all of this and for me, actually raised the bar from the previous effort, The Princes of Ireland.

Intricately woven through several generations with effective literary devices maintaining the thread and providing strong story lines which...more
Sabina
After reading The Princes of Ireland and having some misgivings about how the book was set up, I initially wasn't interested in reading the sequel. I'm certainly very glad I changed my mind because I would have missed out on an excellent read. This part of the story held my interest from the beginning to end and I learned a lot about the history of Ireland. The story flowed far better than the first book, the characters were more fully developed and once again I enjoyed the blend of history and...more
Katrina
I really enjoyed this book. I enjoyed it definitely more than the first book. Not that the first book was bad but this book was better. Though I do agree with one reviewer who said the ending was rushed. Completely agree with that. Between the events of 1916 and the early 1920s. Not to mention, Rutherfurd really glossed over Josph Plunkett's role in the Easter Uprising (one of my favorite songs is "Grace" about Joseph Plunkett's wife, Grace), with only a brief mention. It was rather sad. It was...more
R.L. Anderson
Edward Rutherfurd hit another home run with this one! It continues the saga of Ireland that he started with The Princes of Ireland, extending from the end of Medieval times to the creation of an independent Ireland in the early 20th century. The book helps explain the long standing hostility between the Irish Catholics and English Protestants. Since my own family tree includes ancestors on both sides, I've always tried to remain neutral, but that is not easy to do when you read of the suffering...more
Julia Gallagher
I really enjoyed this two part series on Ireland. This is a sweeping history that begins in ancient Ireland with the first book, The Princes of Ireland. This one picks up with the first book left off, in the 16th century. It carries us through multiple generations of characters from the lowest economic group to the elite class. It follows a particular generation of characters for a while until moving forward a generation of two, so if you need to develop a bond with the characters of a book that...more
Michaela Harris
Being on summer vacation helped me get through this much more quickly than the first book. I enjoyed this book more than the first, which is saying a lot since I thoroughly enjoyed the first book. I knew more of the history relayed in the second book from stories I'd heard from my grandmother and great aunts, but Rutherfurd filled in many gaps. I enjoyed reading about the different families and how each represented a different part of the Irish story. The section of the novel on the famine was m...more
Cynthia
When I was in college, a drunk guy sidled up to me at a St. Patty's party and said "do you know why God invented booze?" I smiled blandly. "To keep the Irish from taking over the world!" He seemed quite proud. I kept my mouth shut. I'd always been told that's why God gave us the English.

This book does a fairly good job of giving some details about the history of Ireland's "troubles" within the narrowish context of historical fiction. The book follows the lives of various families through the cen...more
Lauren
Aug 22, 2008 Lauren rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Louise
The sequel to "The Princes of Ireland" - covering from late 1500's to after 1920. I had a harder time getting through this one. Again, I didn't really like the way the fictional storyline went. Several times I would wonder what it had to do with the history. The author also jumps around quite often so it gets confusing at times. Several times characters/settings are introduced as if you already knew who they were or what was supposed to be going on already. The author has the characters having u...more
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First book necessary? 3 26 Jul 03, 2011 10:10PM  
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16204
Francis Edward Wintle, best known under his pen name Edward Rutherfurd, was born in the cathedral city of Salisbury. Educated locally, and at the universities of Cambridge, and Stanford, California, he worked in political research, bookselling and publishing. After numerous attempts to write books and plays, he finally abandoned his career in the book trade in 1983, and returned to his childhood h...more
More about Edward Rutherfurd...
Sarum: The Novel of England London New York The Princes of Ireland (The Dublin Saga, #1) Russka: The Novel of Russia

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“So does nobody care about Ireland?"
"Nobody. Neither King Louis, nor King Billie, nor King James." He nodded thoughtfully. "The fate of Ireland will be decided by men not a single one of whom gives a damn about her. That is her tragedy.”
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“True the greater part of the Irish people was close to starvation. The numbers of weakened people dying from disease were rising. So few potatoes had been planted that, even if they escaped bight, they would not be enough to feed the poor folk who relied upon them. More and more of those small tenants and cottagers, besides, were being forced off the land and into a condition of helpless destitution. Ireland, that is to say, was a country utterly prostrated.
Yet the Famine came to an end. And how was this wonderful thing accomplished? Why, in the simplest way imaginable. The famine was legislated out of existence. It had to be. The Whigs were facing a General Election.”
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