Erica's Reviews > Star Of The Sea

Star Of The Sea by Joseph O'Connor
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May 11, 2009

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bookshelves: fiction, historical, men-authors, alreadyread, bookshelf-books, irish
Read in June, 2009

Interesting read. Gets in to the heartbreaking details of the Famine in Ireland in the late 1840s from several perspectives. Occasional passages are almost unbearable in describing the suffering of the poor and indifference of the wealthy. O'Connor works hard, however, not to let the desolation and desperation overwhelm the story, injecting humor and the brighter side of humanity when appropriate. The scope and depth of the plot and character development happily precludes the whitewashing of individuals, or creating cliches or caricatures. The story follows certain characters for decades and, rather naturally, this necessitates a richer portrait, one that acknowledges weaknesses, foibles, tragedies, dreams decimated and never regained. Nothing is as simple as it seems among the characters and the complexities of relationships provide the overall strength to the novel. At times it felt somewhat cumbersome, and sometimes the pacing got mired in details. How might one pare it down? I don't know, for as I began, as it stands, the book is most certainly interesting.
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05/24/2009 page 25
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