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The Lady of Galway Manor

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In 1920, Annabeth De Lacy's father is appointed landlord of Galway Parish in Ireland. Bored without all the trappings of the British Court, Annabeth convinces her father to arrange an apprenticeship for her with the Jennings family--descendants of the creator of the famed Claddagh Ring.

Stephen Jennings longs to do anything other than run his family's jewelry shop. Having had his heart broken, he no longer believes in love and is weary of peddling the ÒliesÓ the Claddagh Ring promises.

Meanwhile, as the war for Irish independence gains strength, many locals resent the De Lacys and decide to take things into their own hands to display their displeasure. As events take a dangerous turn for Annabeth and her family, she and Stephen begin to see that perhaps the "other side" isn't quite as barbaric and uncultured as they'd been led to believe--and that the bonds of friendship, love, and loyalty are only made stronger when put through the refiner's fire.

Travel to the Emerald Isle for another poignant and romantic story from the enchanted pen of Jennifer Deibel.

336 pages, Paperback

First published February 1, 2022

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About the author

Jennifer Deibel

3 books466 followers
Jennifer Deibel is a middle school teacher and freelance writer. Her work has appeared on (in)courage, on The Better Mom, in Missions Mosaic Magazine, and others. With firsthand immersive experience abroad, Jennifer writes stories that help redefine home through the lens of culture, history, and family. After nearly a decade of living in Ireland and Austria, she now lives in Arizona.

Debut novel, A Dance in Donegal, releases February 2, 2021 from Revell. Follow Moira Doherty to the wilds of rural Ireland in 1921. Available for preorder wherever books are sold.

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5 stars
253 (33%)
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Displaying 1 - 30 of 266 reviews
Profile Image for Deanne Patterson.
1,828 reviews87 followers
January 31, 2022
This book holds a special place in my heart. You see, an ancestor of mine sailed from Galway when she was sixteen years old without her family. I don't know the circumstances of the traveling .
By the time I had thought of asking my grandmother about our Irish ancestry she had passed, an opportunity passed never to be retrieved.
I absolutely loved reading about this book taking place in Galway. The book has such an authenticity to it. I have such an understanding of it now and truly feel as though I visited Ireland in the 1920's. The spoken Irish language,the descriptions of the foods,the places they went,the day to day life,the flooding. It all made the book come alive for me. It was so interesting reading the legend of the Claddagh ring and how the jewelry shop has been in the same family for so many generations.
I need one of these gorgeous rings.
Thank you to the author for writing such a charming book. I very much enjoyed it!
#TheLadyofGalwayManor #NetGalley.

Publishing Feb 01,2022.
I was given a complimentary copy of this book.
All opinions expressed are my own.
Profile Image for Literary Redhead.
1,626 reviews494 followers
January 25, 2022
I'm a quarter Irish whose Celtic roots run deep, so was thrilled to read this beautifully written tale set in 1920s Galway. I learned so much about English-Irish tensions and fell in love with the love story of Stephen, a member of the Irish family who makes Claddagh Rings, and Annabeth, an apprentice with the family and daughter of the English landlord of Galway Parish. Highly recommended for Christian histfic lovers who adore glorious Irish stories.

Pub Date 01 Feb 2022
#TheLadyofGalwayManor #NetGalley

Thanks to the author, Revell, and NetGalley for the ARC; opinions are mine.
Profile Image for Maja  - BibliophiliaDK ✨.
1,078 reviews638 followers
January 15, 2022

If you're looking for an easy read with few surprises, look no further. If you're looking for something original and enthralling, keep looking.

👎 What I Disliked 👎


" It's like, like- Like she's the princess and I'm the stable boy."
- Joey Tribiani

This. This is the entire plot. Sure there's a layer of national dislike and distrust between our main couple, Anna and Stephen. But in a nutshell, Joey describes the plot perfectly. And it didn't impress me. I've read it before. Several times. And I have seen it done better. It lacked something more for me. Something that set it apart from the score of other books with the exact same premise.

Predictable: The plot was super thin and the characters were clichés. Which also meant that I knew exactly what was going to happen. There were no surprises. Nothing made me go 'huh, that was interesting'. It was just blah.

Stephen: Yes, the characters were clichés - there was the aristocratic lady, who has a good heart and likes to work. There's the aristocratic father, who falls on hard times and orders his daughter to save him by throwing away her own life. But none were a bigger cliché than Stephen. The guy who doesn't believe in love because he's been burned. Once. Yawn. It made the story even more predictable, because I have seen this character so many times before. I knew exactly how he was going to behave and act at every turn. No originality.

Chemistry: Anna and Stephen had next to no romantic chemistry. They were at odds, then they had one date, and then they were in love. I just didn't see it. I didn't feel it. It felt very superficial and rushed.

Ireland: This was supposed an homage to Ireland. But I didn't see or feel that. I wanted more Ireland! More Irish culture, more Irish history. I wanted the Irish fight for independence to be a much larger part of this story. That at least would have given it some spice, some intrigue and something original.

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Profile Image for Grace Johnson.
Author 15 books305 followers
February 18, 2022
#1 This is a long review, so pull up a chair and grab a bowl of popcorn. You’ll be here awhile. #2 When I read a review, I want substantial information. So I will not skimp on the details. Which may mean some spoilers, so watch out.

Stars: 3.5

Synopsis: Lady Annabeth De Lacy, daughter of Galway Parish’s newest landlord, is apprenticed out to the local jeweler, Seamus Jennings, upon arrival to satisfy her creative curiosities. However, her apprenticeship becomes much more as she becomes involved in the community...and involved with the heart of Seamus’ grouchy son Stephen.

We’re gonna be here a while, y’all. My notes on this book alone were three pages! I’ll try to keep things as concise as I can, but I make no promises.

First things first, I loved the setting. Of course, anything set in Ireland is bound to be delightful, but Deibel did a lovely job of highlighting Galway and its culture, making it seem so vibrant. Unfortunately, I feel like this story was so short and rushed, almost skimpy, so I didn’t get the time to fully experience and enjoy the beautiful setting.

While we’re talking about the setting...was it just me or did some thing seems very 1880s? Especially in the beginning, I noticed a lot of views and whatnot that stood out to me as Victorian rather than 1920s, so I had a hard time defining the era in some ways. (I needed flappers. There. I said it.) Fortunately, the technology fit the era, even if everyone’s outdated ideals didn’t.

Speaking of views, before we get into anything else, I must address the ageism. Deibel makes mention of ageism in her author’s note when she mentioned overcoming prejudice...but this book was chock-full of ageism! Our heroine Anna and her sister continually refer to Lord Corning (whose exact age is unknown, but he’s supposedly middle-aged or older) as a “prune” and a detestable old man. Now, I understand him not being the most swoon-worthy suitor in the girls’ minds, but they didn’t even respect him as a person in general because of how old he was. This is something I’ve noticed more and more in Christian fiction—young girls are engaged to old men, and the old men are presented as horrible humans even though they are never present or explored in the book (like Lord Corning). First of all, ageism in that respect wasn’t common in history, nor is it now. *looks at Katharine McPhee and Catherine Zeta-Jones*

I understand if the heroine doesn’t want to marry someone that much older than her, but please, please, authors, don’t portray all old men as villains and, if at all possible, quit employing this trope! If you have to give your heroine an unwanted suitor/engagement, give her a reason to not like the guy! I’ll feel sympathy for the girl if she’s being forced to marry someone abusive, unfaithful, or immoral, but not if she’s shunning a respectable man and disrespecting her parents all because “well, I don’t like him, he’s old and ugly, I want to marry a young, handsome fellow.” Or, I dunno, why can’t the girl find love with the man in spite of his shortcomings? Why does age have to be a shortcoming? Why does she have to find love with a young, handsome dude? Are men not valuable or suitable husbands unless they’re young and hot?

So, yes, rant aside, I was just about to really get into the story when I found out that Anna was struggling with an unwanted potential engagement. Why is it that every single story has to do with an unwanted engagement? Why? Please, I must know! This trope is so overdone it makes me sick! If you need drama, pick something different and actually interesting, not the same thing everyone else is doing.

I will say this...I have noticed that authors have begun including the perspective of the heroine’s father in these matters, giving them more depth and sympathy instead of making them out to be evil, cruel, cold-hearted manipulators. I appreciate that even as I realize it means all the cold-heartedness is attributed to the old fiance. Can’t win for losing, eh?

Now, I’m done with it. We are moving on, y’all.

Let’s talk about our other old man, Seamus Jennings. I loved this guy and his humor, but y’all. He seemed way too perfect. Like, he knew everything that was going on and exactly what to say in every situation. An admirable trait, yes, and typical of a perceptive father with a caring heart; however, Seamus took the place of God in his son’s life. By that, I mean that Stephen never prayed or read the Bible or sought Christ’s opinion in anything...mostly because his father already told him exactly what to do or say. Not something I recommend, in part because God is our foremost authority and because no human is as perfect as Seamus Jennings.

Fortunately, this was not so for Anna. There was a subtle faith theme woven into her side of the story, and the prayers she would whisper up were inspiring. I do wish that God had been more involved in Anna and Stephen’s relationship—perhaps then it wouldn’t have been so unnecessarily dramatic and flip-floppy.

(Don’t tell me I was the only one who didn’t like the constant on-again off-again toward the end there…)

Speaking of Stephen. Y’all, I wanted to like this dude...but he annoyed the heck out of me in the beginning with all his whining and grumbling. Broody, I like. Whiny baby, I do not. BUT THEN. Yes, but then. Toward the middle there, when Stephen started softening his heart to Anna, he began really growing on me and I could’ve sworn I liked him. But then. Yes, but then again. He got all whiny on me again and couldn’t stick with his decisions to save his life. I wanted so bad for him to fight for love, to stand firm in it, to be strong...but nope, he faltered and fell apart and acted like love was all about him. Well, it’s not.

Fortunately, he saw the light at the end, but by that point, it was too late for me to fall in love with him.

As for Anna, I could have liked her. She wasn’t annoying or obnoxious, but she wasn’t really anything else either. Had we gotten time to see her creating jewelry and working on designs or interacting with the community, her character would’ve been much deeper and more interesting. However, her interactions were limited to her family and the Jenningses and her character was limited to the plot and all the romance drama. Like, the scene with Paddy or when she helps clean up after the storm...she really shined in those scenes, and I wanted more moments like those. But nope.

Speaking of Paddy...he was my favorite. I loved him, his perspective, all of it. I wanted more of him!

Lastly, THERE WAS AN EPILOGUE. That made my heart sing. The epilogue alone is worth a whole star, if you ask me. And while we’re on the subject of the ending, the author’s note was spectacular! I loved learning that all of it—for the most part—was real! The Claddagh is a real ring, a real symbol, a real story—all of it! That was also worth a star in my book!

Long story short, this story just didn’t do it for me. There were elements that were amazing (the Claddagh), elements that were subpar (the characters), and elements that flat-out sickened me (the ageism). Unfortunately, that’s not a good balance. However, Deibel’s writing itself wasn’t half bad, so I just might give her another go...just this time with a story that holds a wee bit more promise than The Lady of Galway Manor.

Disclaimer: A complimentary copy of this book was provided by the publisher, publicist, or author, including NetGalley. All opinions expressed are my own.
Profile Image for Stephanie Agnes-Crockett.
168 reviews24 followers
November 5, 2022
I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publisher. Opinions expressed are my own.

Scripture Connection
No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends.

John 15:13
Spiritual Themes
The novel explores the meaning of love, in conjunction with friendship and loyalty. Stephen goes from being very cynical about romance to embracing the biblical definition of love (John 15:13). There’s some light discussion on inherent human value.

There’s also some valuable, if light, discussion of the harm wrought when people use the term “Christian” to justify wicked actions.

What I Liked
I really appreciated Anna’s relationship with her sister, Emmaline. Their relationship was truly beautiful, and Emmaline is such a dear, loving character!

I appreciated Deibel’s discussion of England’s treatment of Ireland, particularly when describing the soupers— so-called “missionaries” who would only help people who chose to convert. My mind flashes to the parallel with the “missionaries” who came to the land where I live, and where my Indigenous ancestors lived before me. While the treatment in my homeland was far, far worse, I do appreciate that Deibel addresses the sin of manipulating people with religion. And that attitude of conquest in evangelism persists, to this day, as do its fruits.

Along a similar line, I liked that Deibel addresses the “savior” mentality. Although both English and Irish people are white, I am again drawn to the parallel between the events in Europe and the events on my continent. We use the word “white savior” to describe someone who attempts to change or “save” people of color. In The Lady of Galway Manor, Anna learns humility as she realizes that the Irish do not need to learn the ways of the English.

In terms of historical setting, Deibel paints a realistic portrait of Ireland, with descriptions of the countryside and plenty of dialect. Moreover, she provides textual cues about the meaning and pronunciation of words. For instance, oftentimes, a word uttered by one character is then reiterated in English by another. Similarly, we get pronunciation cues based on the foreigner (Anna’s) mispronunciation– and subsequent clarification– of words. Additionally, the book is equipped with a Glossary of Terms that includes pronunciation and meanings. (Unaware of this resource, I did not avail myself of it while reading. Even so, I don’t feel that I missed any important meaning).

Overall, I would describe the novel as “shallow.” While the author raises some worthwhile points, throughout (such as the issue of prejudice and entitlement), I feel that these points would have benefited from much more exploration, particularly because this is an adult novel.

For example, Anna undergoes some character development as she begins to learn more about the Irish perspective in their fight for independence. She also realizes that the people don’t need saving. But the resolution to this feels really simplistic. She goes out and she prays (which I think is wonderful!), but then just resolves that henceforth she will love each person as an individual. Good, but not really a nuanced response to a nuanced issue. I would have actually preferred to see this unresolved, perhaps with movement in the right direction, but not wrapped up so easily. As it is, I feel that the easy resolution undermines the importance of the points raised (particularly in their applications beyond the scope of the story).

The way the book handles parental relationships feels very odd to me. At the beginning of the story, Stephen is prepared to leave his elderly father, even though his dad won’t be able to run the shop without him. As the novel progresses, Stephen is working up the courage to tell (not ask) his dad about this decision.

In contrast, Anna, for the sake of class, is expected to make a HUGE sacrifice for her family/parents.

What is odd to me is that Anna’s sacrifice is described as somthing her faith leads her to do– which works for me, with the John 15:13 emphasis–but no one has a problem with Stephen leaving his dad who obviously needs him. Given the lack of comparative commentary on the subject, I didn’t get the feeling that the author was trying to make a social commentary on gendered expectations. It felt more like “that’s just the way it goes.”

Romantic Content
In terms of romantic content, this book is pretty “clean,” by typical standards. I believe there were two kissing scenes, which weren’t overly descriptive. There was also some brief recounting of the kissing scene to other characters, but it was done in a sweet and innocent way.

With that said, the romance in the book seemed very reliant on physicality– not in the sense that there was a lot of physical description, but in the sense that this seemed to be the basis of the relationship, for both Anna and Stephen. Early on, both Anna’s and Stephen’s narrations allude to finding the other person attractive.

Anna wishes to earn Stephen’s favor, as it is apparent that he dislikes her from the start. Stephen is determined to maintain his aversion towards Anna, despite his instant attraction to her. While the two do spend some time together, I feel that the reason for their love really isn’t developed. The two attend a music performance together and, when urged to dance together, do so.

After this evening, the characters are pretty much in love. Yes, Stephen continues to fight it, and yes, there are obstacles, but I really feel that the relationship wasn’t well-developed. And while I recognize that the physical exprince of dancing with someone can certainly result in feelings of attachment for that person, I don’t see that as the basis for abiding, committed love.

With that said, Stephen does undergo clear character development and, by the end of the story, definitely demonstrates a much deeper understanding of the true meaning of love.

Other Content
Some of the romantic moments of the story happen when the main character is somewhat engaged to another man. To be fair, she does NOT want to be engaged to him, and one can easily argue that she wasn’t really engaged to the other guy. Nonetheless, I felt a bit iffy on this and, due to the nature of my blog, thought it was worth a mention.

There are some uses of terms like “Gee” and “Goodness.”

Recommendation Status
If I’m being completely honest, this is a book I have some trouble recommending. Usually, when I don’t recommend a book, it’s because of some glaring issue(s) I have with content. In this case, it’s not so much that I have a problem with content. It’s just that the book feels too insubstantial to me. There were some good points brought up, but I felt that they lacked the development necessary for them to really resonate powerfully.

With that said, if you’re looking for a light, clean, historical read and you specifically want an Irish setting, this book may be a fun choice for you.
Profile Image for Sarah Sundin.
Author 19 books2,769 followers
April 15, 2022
On the surface, Jennifer Deibel’s The Lady of Galway Manor is a sweet romance in a lovely setting. It is indeed that. Yet it is so much more. Exploring classism and racism, the novel challenges the characters – and us – to confront the stories we believe about other people and how those stories color our attitudes and actions. Deibel’s beautiful story also glows with her love of Ireland and its culture, bringing the history of this land to life.
2,909 reviews1,727 followers
April 21, 2022
Oh my, but this story pushed all my buttons right from the very first page! I'm Irish born -- to a Protestant father whose ancestors date back to those English usurpers who governed Irish land and a Catholic mother whose ancestors were farmers and labourers. Let's just say there are tons of reasons why we immigrated to Canada. So many hard feelings constantly resurfacing even today. And Deibel does a fantastic job of capturing a part of Ireland's tumultuous past -- I was alternately seething and lamenting and shivering over ominous foreshadowing.

The author captures colonialism in all its pompous sense of superiority and brutality with infuriating accuracy. Anna's parents set my teeth on edge and kept me fuming. Thankfully our heroine has a kinder -- and curiouser -- nature and the ability to think for herself. Although she starts out believing the tripe her English upbringing has doled out to her, it isn't long before she comes to appreciate the wonder and beauty and richness of the Irish culture.

Loved watching Anna grow from pampered English miss who thinks she's honouring Stephen's humble shop with her presence to a woman of substance who can work along side him. They are both creative spirits with a heart for God but, for all practical purposes, are enemies. At least that's how Stephen sees this prissy upstart who threatens to destroy his future plans. Our hero is more than a tad bitter -- both about love and the English occupation of his country -- and with good reason. Learning his back story, watching him slowly realize that he holds his own kind of prejudice...well, it makes for an absorbing story.

Lots of character growth (and not just the hero and heroine), angsty forbidden love, action and danger, all set during a particular troubled time in Ireland's history makes The Lady of Galway Manor a compelling read. And the Claddagh ring tie in that threads through the entire story is sheer brilliance.
Profile Image for Kailey.
621 reviews65 followers
January 29, 2022
I really enjoyed this book! I love that it was set in Ireland! I think that the author did a great job with this story. I enjoyed the history. I feel like this time period and place aren’t as common. I think that this is one that I would read again! I recommend it for historical fiction fans!

I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.
Profile Image for Scott County Library System.
184 reviews14 followers
December 17, 2021
This review by librarian Christine Barth was first published in the Dec. 2021 issue of Library Journal.

Stephen Jennings is peddling a lie: He works in his family jewelry store and retells the legend of the Irish Claddagh ring, but he doesn't believe in love. Living in 1920s Ireland doesn't help his cynicism as he watches his impoverished neighbors struggle, the result of British imperialism. When British aristocrat Anna De Lacy is assigned as Stephen's apprentice in the shop, sparks fly, but they both fight a growing attraction. De Lacy has been raised to view the Irish as uncivilized peasants, but as she studies the art and music of her new country, she begins to questions the version of history she has been taught. Jennings struggles to trust the aristocracy, as violence against his own family has soured him against all English people.

VERDICT: Deibel (A Dance in Donegal) has found her rhythm, delivering a classic boy-meets-girl story that packs a powerful punch and avoids preachiness. The historical tale will ring true to readers looking to examine their own biases. Fans of Christian historical romance by Karen Witemeyer and Deeanne Gist will enjoy this up-and-coming author.
Profile Image for Rebecca.
1,852 reviews97 followers
August 13, 2022

"She never dreamed Galway would be so endearing and exciting. A city teeming with music, architecture, and art - the very last thing she'd expected."

Expecting to live in a very rough, indigent environment when her family moved to Ireland, Lady Annabeth De Lacy found herself enchanted instead. Yes, it was different from her native England, and a lot less refined, but curiously pleasant nonetheless. After her father was granted the lordship of Galway Parish, her family's move to Galway Manor had raised questions about what Annabeth could do with her time away from polite society. Allowed to indulge her artistic tendencies by apprenticing with the local jewelers whose ancestors had originally crafted the famed Claddagh rings, Anna found herself feeling at home with the aging Seamus Jennings and his handsome son Stephen. If only . . . but for the sake of her family's future, Anna had been promised to another.

To what extent would Anna and Stephen have to adjust their dreams?

"In the few short months she'd been in his life, Annabeth De Lacy had been one of the clearest examples of God's love Stephen had ever encountered, aside from his father. All these years, he believed those professing to be in love were blind. It turned out, it was he who was visionless."

Enjoy this lovely look at what sacrificial love really means.

I received a copy of this book from Baker Publishing through Interviews and Reviews. The opinions stated above are entirely my own.
Profile Image for Susan Snodgrass.
2,002 reviews199 followers
February 1, 2022
Sweeping story of a wonderful family, father and son, who craft fine claddagh jewelry. An Irish father and son, in the midst of the Irish rebellion, who take on a titled aristocratic daughter of the new English landlord in their village. However, nine suspects the events heading their way in these troubled times.

Well done and fact based, this second novel from Jennifer Deibel will touch your heart.

My thanks to the publisher for a copy of this book. The opinion here is my own.
352 reviews17 followers
January 23, 2022
Love love and love this story!! Learning how to love again isn't always easy, it's scary handing your heart to someone knowing they have the power to break it. God truly does have our best interests in mind, no matter how impossible a situation may seem.
Profile Image for Emily  Baer .
80 reviews
November 22, 2021
Once again Jennifer Deibel transforms the seemingly ordinary into an enchanting and atmospheric tale. I especially loved learning more about the claddagh rings and the history behind them.
Profile Image for Andrea Cox.
Author 3 books1,637 followers
March 12, 2022
FTC Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book. These are my honest thoughts.

This story was pretty charming.

I thought I wouldn’t like Paddy McGinnty, but he ended up growing on me so that he became one of my favorite characters. I really never did like Annabeth’s father, but his personality clashed completely with mine, so that was understandable and I didn’t hold that against him. Annabeth was great when she wasn’t insisting that people call her Anna—seriously, she spent a lot of time in the first third of the book making a big deal about how she wished everyone would just call her Anna. It’s no wonder the first third of the book felt sluggish to me. Seamus was amazing. I wish I could say more, but there aren’t really any words. He was just the sort of man I’d adore having as a father-in-law. Stephen was moody and unpredictable. I was never really sure if I liked that or not. At times, he felt bi-polar, but that wasn’t a part of his character, so it might have only been my perception of him. However, I came to adore him despite his hot-cold temperament.

I was disappointed to see that a key plot point had been bumped up two months, to take place in mid-July, compared to when it really happened back in September of 1920. Must history constantly be rewritten incorrectly? Why can’t we make our fictional timelines fit with the real timelines? This is a big pet peeve for me, as history is important to accurately learn from so that past mistakes mightn’t be repeated.

The theme of accepting people of different ethnic backgrounds was well written. It’s clear the author has a heart for healing humanity through her stories. I was very glad to see how Annabeth and Stephen learned life skills from one another and to appreciate each other even though they were from rival countries. This story can go a long way to patching up hurt feelings, if readers are open to its encouragements and advice.

The Irish dialect was used inconsistently. At times it was nonexistent, while sometimes it was too thick. More balance and consistency were needed. It also felt wasteful to repeat in English (especially within bits of dialogue) the meaning of the Irish words used, particularly since there was an Irish “dictionary” in the back, though some words in the story were omitted there.

A bit of feminism slipped in, but it ended up being a moot point. That made me wonder if it was simply tossed in for inclusion’s sake or if it was supposed to be part of the plot but was forgotten.

The Claddagh region was amazing to get a glimpse of, but I do wish that there had been another one or two scenes that took place there, to further develop Annabeth’s changing sensibilities.

Speaking of the Claddagh, the ring bearing the same name was used in spectacular fashion. This was absolutely my favorite thing about this story. I especially admired Annabeth’s take on it and the ways in which that was incorporated into the tale. So special!

Overall, this was an enjoyable, engaging story that prodded emotion from me, particularly in the waning chapters. Yep, that means I wept straight through them.

Content: tobacco, pubs, replacement profanity, replacement expletives, alcohol, gambling, one profane phrase
Profile Image for Jeanne Alfveby Crea.
649 reviews45 followers
December 14, 2021
The Lady of Galway Manor by Author Jennifer Deibel is a prime example of enchanting historical fiction! This engaging story truly captured the time of unrest in Ireland years before they gained their Independence. Jennifer Deibel's skilled pen and knowledge of Ireland shine through in this beautiful story. I have a Claddagh ring and loved learning about The Legend of the Claddagh Ring.

I loved that one of the settings in the book was the shop where the Claddagh rings were made. Seamus and his son Stephen take on the daughter of a British aristocrat and teach her how to make this beautiful jewelry. (I love Seamus! And Stephen, the cantankerous, grew on me.)
"The magnitude of this opportunity wasn't lost on her. And She vowed to make the most of absolutely every moment. Even if it meant dealing with a cantankerous host."
"Anna marveled at all the nuances that could exist in one single design. While each piece of jewelry included the same elements-the hands, the heart, the crown-no two were exactly alike." The heart stands for love. The crown, loyalty. And the hands stand for friendship. "Incredible. Tis truly breathtaking work you do." "The jewelry they make is absolutely stunning."

Themes include: civil unrest over the long standing issue of freedom between the British and the Irish, recognizing the skewed and often inaccurate views about the "other side", and the fact that there's always a choice. A beautiful gentle faith arc, family relationships, loyalty, sacrifice, loss and love all beautifully merge to make this a wonderfully poignant and romantic story.

I highly recommend The Lady of Galway Manor by award winning author Jennifer Diebel. Fans of historical fiction and fans of Ireland will love it! If I ever get back to Ireland, I am going to go to Galway! And I'll keep all her tips from the author's note at the end of the book in mind!

Thank you so much to the author, publisher, and Net Galley for allowing me to read an early copy of The Lady of Galway Manor. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Connie Saunders.
1,405 reviews96 followers
February 21, 2022
Ireland's fight for independence, the Claddagh ring, and a son wanting to escape from the jewelry business that is his legacy --- are all a part of this riveting story, but there's also the allure of a young British woman who yearns for more than a life of luxury. Annabeth de Lacy is The Lady of Galway Manor and her joy for life and her love for others make it hard for most to resist her. Most, except Stephen Jennings, who believes that the British are overpowering, the legend of the Claddagh ring is a hoax, and there is no guarantee of eternal love. What follows is a journey filled with conflict, loss, and disappointment, but buffered by hope, faith, love, and loyalty,

Author Jennifer Deibel's knowledge of the Emerald Isle and the addition of the Claddagh legacy, along with the heated political atmosphere that was evident in 1920, make this story especially engaging. It is, however, the attraction between the Irish Stephen and the British Annabeth that grabbed my heart. He is certain that undying devotion doesn't exist, and she is equally sure that she's found it in him. The history fan in me loved the historical detail, and my romantic side adored Annabeth and Stephen! I recommend this stunning story to all who enjoy historical Christian romance.

I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher. There was no obligation for a favorable review. These are my own thoughts.
Profile Image for Paula Shreckhise.
1,110 reviews84 followers
January 30, 2022
“Her desires and the things her faith led her to do had always aligned. Until this moment. Now, they threatened to tear her asunder.”
During unrest in Ireland, Lady Annabeth De Lacy has come to Galway when her father is appointed Landlord. As an obedient daughter, she puts family interests first promising to marry for an advantageous connection.
This is a first-hand look at the struggles of the era and the life of a jeweler in Galway. The story, built around the Claddagh symbol, is very interesting and the Claddagh is applied to spiritual truths: “What better way to express love, loyalty and friendship than what our Lord did for us on the cross?”
Forbidden love, clashes between countries and classes, and things done out of obligation are played out in this colorful tale in Ireland. Walking through the pages of this novel, you will find danger, attraction and dreams hoped for and quashed. But most of all you will find loyalty, friendship and love.
*I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell on behalf of the author. I was not required to give a favorable review. All opinions are my own.*
Profile Image for Brooklyne E..
62 reviews17 followers
May 19, 2022
What a fun and summer-y read! The Lady of Galway Manor was a light historical read that had me day dreaming about what it would be like to see Ireland in the 1920s. I loved the descriptions to this book and the characters were great too! The fact that it was centered around a jewelry shop was also unique and I liked getting the behind-the-scenes descriptions to making jewelry.

Annabeth was a fun main character. Her role was the optimistic one, she always saw things through different lenses. Her view of the world around her was refreshing and even though she was naive at times, she always put others above herself. I definitely enjoyed watching her character grow and I admire her thoughtfulness and faith in God. Stephen was a bit stubborn at first, but his character grew on me. One of the side characters that I will mention is Stephen's dad, Seamus. He was a hoot, his antics and wisdom found a great balance.

Towards the end of the book, the plot fell a bit flat for me, the excitement wasn't that exciting and the reasoning behind the climax didn't feel valid to me. Despite this, the historical details, fun characters, and cool setting made this book worth the read! I'd recommend this book to historical fiction lovers!
Profile Image for Monique.
579 reviews13 followers
March 6, 2022
Although this isn't a genre I typically gravitate toward (historical romance fiction), I really enjoyed this book! Without spoiling anything, this is a beautifully told story of conflict, heartache, love, and redemption. I loved the Ireland setting, Anna's views of the world around her, and the growing relationships between Anna, Seamus, and Stephen. The characters are well developed and easy to become invested in. Seamus is definitely my favorite character—I’d love to have him as a father-in-law! I'm now interested in reading more books by this author.

Note: I received a free copy of this book from its publisher, for which I am extremely grateful, and these are my honest thoughts.
Profile Image for Monica H (TeaandBooks).
665 reviews47 followers
January 29, 2022
Annabeth DeLacy's father was appointed landlord of Galway Parish in Ireland in the 1920s. Anabeth was bored with the British Court so she is ready for a new adventure. She talks her father into letting her apprentice with the Jennings' family jewelry shop.

Stephen Jennings spends every day in the family jewelry shop selling the famed Claddagh ring. But Stephen has experienced some hard things in his life that have embittered his heart towards the ring, the shop and love, in general.

At the same time, there is rumors of war for Irish independence from the British. Both the DeLacys and the Jennings experience some of the events of this time differently. Can they bridge the gaps of their differences?

The Lady of Galway Manor by Jennifer Deibel is a historical romance book set in Ireland. I really enjoyed the history in this book as I was not aware of what went on in these countries in the 1920s. I really liked Annabeth. She seemed like a real sweetheart and I admired how her faith kept her going. Stephen was quite bitter and his character reflected that at times. Annabeth's dad seemed like a pretty unsavory character and I had a hard time finding some of the family relationships believable. I also did find this book to be fairly predictable in the plot. There weren't really any surprises. However, sometimes, a person just wants to know they are going to get a happy ending. If that is the book that you are looking for, then I recommend The Lady of Galway Manor.

I received a copy of this book through the author and the publisher. All opinions within this review are my own.
Profile Image for Jessica Baker (A Baker's Perspective).
1,137 reviews58 followers
February 20, 2022
I really enjoyed this trip to Ireland filled with history, romance, life lessons, differing societal classes, and more. Let me start by saying that Deibel does an amazing job of making you feel like you are in Ireland. Not just the language, but the descriptiveness, the characters, and just the things that they encountered allowed me to easily imagine being there. When Anna helped a woman essentially sweep mud out of her living room, I could feel it. When Stephen showed Anna how to make the jewelry, I could hear it, smell it. I was easily transported into the story and didn't want to leave.

Deibel brings such an important lesson to this story, really in two different ways. There are two sides to every story, to every "war". And just because someone is Irish or British, doesn't mean they agree with what the rest of their society believes. Not only did Anna and Stephen need to learn this about each other, the people in the community needed to learn it about Anna. I don't want to give away spoilers, but there were several times I could see Deibel slowly working out this lesson in the characters and it was just beautiful to read.

Anna was also a great character to read about. She saw Ireland with innocence, was eager to learn, wasn't afraid to step outside the norm for a moment, but also had tremendous loyalty to her family. Though I cannot comment too much on that because of spoilers, I will say that I had a lot of respect for her character and the decisions she made later in the book. She was a strong character. Certainly stronger than many people gave her credit for.

The Lady of Galway Manor was such a delightful read. I was sorry to see it come to and end. I'm kind of hoping, that given the way Anna's sister's story went, perhaps we might see her in a future novel? Hint, hint, wink, wink. But either way, I'd be happy with just rereading this novel for now.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Caitlin (CMAReads).
1,022 reviews42 followers
February 23, 2022
Thanks to Revell for the free book.
A romance between an Irishman of the family that created the Claddagh ring, and a British landlord captured me right away. I loved Anna's humility and heart. She truly showed what Jesus' love should look like on every page. I also had a soft spot for Stephen, and I understood his desire to protect his heart. The time period of this novel was also so interesting. I don't know anything about Ireland's fight for independence, so I appreciated how Deibel highlighted this in her story - and her author's note at the end sharing about how she sees parallels between this time period and the one were living in one hundred years later was so heartfelt and filled with Truth.
I did want a bit more from the end - especially when it came to Anna's father, but the epilogue was perfect - and it more than made up for my wanting. This historical fiction novel was full of vivid characters and great messages, and I hope to read the author's previous work soon.
1,324 reviews11 followers
March 3, 2022
Life in Ireland was not always easy and this book gives the reader a glimpse into what life was like a long time ago.

Stephen is a stubborn man who definitely did not want to give Anna a chance. But her kindness easily shines through and he can’t deny it.

I kept wondering as read how would they find their way to each other. Her being a courtier and him being basically a peasant. Of course I’m not going to tell you how that happens, you will have to pick up the book and read it for yourself.

Overall, a good and satisifying read.

A copy of this book was given to me through the publisher. All opinions are my own .
Profile Image for Melissa.
2,127 reviews
March 11, 2022
A historical story set in Ireland? Yes, please! I enjoyed this story set in 1920 Ireland during an uprising between England and Ireland for Irish independence. Anna and Stephen were likable characters and I loved Stephen's father Seamus. I also really liked that Stephen and Seamus owned the jewelry store and made the Claddagh rings. Learning about the history behind that was interesting and fun. This story held several surprises along the way and the ending was exciting and really entertaining. This was a very enjoyable read!

I received this book from the publisher and was not required to post a positive review. All thoughts are my own.
Profile Image for Michelle.
897 reviews37 followers
February 19, 2022
Who doesn't love an Irish legend, unique characters, and a fantastic setting?! I hope to visit Ireland some day but for now I try to do so via the books I read. This story is a great escape to the beautiful country and I enjoyed the story of the Claddagh ring. I also like how Annabeth changes it slightly in the end (read it to know what I mean!). This is a fun story that has a bit of romance. At times this book moved a bit slow for me. I felt like I didn't get to know the characters as much as I would have liked. I enjoyed the majority of this book but at times I felt like it was just missing something to keep my interest totally invested. This is a fun read with all of the Ireland facts though and I found that to be most interesting.

Take a step back in time and visit Ireland with this new book by Jennifer Deibel!

Three Stars.

"I received this book from Revell for free. All opinions are my own and I was not required to write a positive review."
Profile Image for Alyshia.
152 reviews
December 31, 2021
The is a very classic love story. You have a beautiful damsel and a handsome knight. The beautiful damsel is a little more modern than traditional allows, as she is driven and independent, and the knight is a little more surly than usual, but the story is the same. She’s in distress and he saves the day. I don’t totally love that trope, but lots of people do and if you’re one of them, then this sweet slow burn is for you! Also features a happy and tidy ending.
Profile Image for Kristina.
3,443 reviews60 followers
February 3, 2022
The Lady of Galway Manor by Jennifer Deibel is a tale about a father and son silversmith’s who create claddagh rings and an English lady who wishes to learn the craft. The author transports readers back to 1920 in Ireland when the Irish rebellion is taking place. When Galway City gets a new English landlord, tensions rise. I thought The Lady of Galway Manor was well-written with developed characters. The author captured the time and place beautifully. The feelings between the English and Irish were realistic along with the attitudes of the people on both sides. The story captured the unrest and instability in Ireland. It was a tense time in the Emerald Isle. I liked Anna or Lady Annabeth De Lacy. She is an intelligent, creative, and compassionate woman. Stephen shows her around the city, and she gets a chance to truly experience it. She is amazed the creativity (the arts) of the people. I just loved Stephen’s father, Seamus. He is a lively character who added humor to the story. Stephen is a dower fellow who wishes to get away from the legend of the Claddagh. Life has dealt Stephen some cruel blows which have changed him. He is bitter and is not willing to let go of it. The vivid descriptions of Galway City brought the scenery alive for me. I enjoyed learning about the history of the Claddagh (I have a sterling Irish Claddagh ring of my own). The romance between Stephen and Anna developed over the course of the book. I enjoyed watching Anna and Stephen fall for each other and deal with issues keeping them apart. The ending was lovely and emotional. I like how everything played out for the characters. Readers who enjoy historical fiction will be delighted with The Lady of Galway Manor. The Lady of Galway Manor will send you back in time where there is astonishing tension, a displeased silversmith, a devious dad, an artistic Annabeth, an unsolicited suitor, and a surprising secret.
Profile Image for Rachel.
2,085 reviews78 followers
October 30, 2021
The Lady of Galway Manor by Jennifer Deibel is a great historical fiction that tells of a beautiful story of love finding a way to blossom in times of uncertainty, upheaval, and change.

What a wonderful, wonderful story. I love anything that takes place in Ireland, and being able to visit Galway City (era 1920s) was just breathtaking. The descriptions of the landscapes, structures, fashions, and life in this place and at this time…lets just say that the author has a real talent.

I loved this story of Annabeth and Stephen. That despite their differences of family, upbringing, and current social situations they found something in one another that went above all of those things. Their story and the progression towards the ending was slow, powerful, and romantic. I liked their respective characters as well. Both were likable, realistic, and had strong moral compasses. The passion and love that developed is evident as well.

Many changes were taking place politically at this time, and the author did a great job adding that feeling of unrest and volatility to the storyline gave things a sense of urgency and importance. I liked the balance between reality and romance.

I enjoyed the plot, pacing, and I loved the ending. I also enjoyed the Author’s Note at the end giving reference and inspiration.

A great read for anyone that loves historical fiction.

5/5 stars

Thank you NG and Revell Publishing for this wonderful arc and in return I am submitting my unbiased and voluntary review and opinion.

I am posting this review to my GR and Bookbub accounts immediately and will post it to my Amazon, Instagram, and B&N accounts upon publication on 2/1/22.
Profile Image for Diana N..
504 reviews23 followers
December 27, 2021
I really liked this romance story involving the history of the Claddagh Ring.

I really liked Anna's character in this book since she really went against the grain for ladies of her time (even trousers). Stephen and Anna's relationship is very complex, from his not believing in love to her duty to her family, but I loved seeing it develop over the jewelry apprenticeship.

I really did not like Lord De Lacy's character since he was a so over the top it wasn't believable. I think a little more compassion may have made that character more compelling and conflicted instead of coming off like a tyrant.

The symbolism was necessary in the overall story for the history and spirit of the Claddagh plus faith, but it felt a little forced sometimes.

Overall, I liked the main characters and the uniqueness that this book brought in the Claddagh background.

Thank you to the publisher and Netgalley for providing me a copy of this ARC for my honest review.
Profile Image for Lori.
1,701 reviews76 followers
January 23, 2022
Sometimes lessons has to be learned from experience not handed down or taught as Anna has found out.
I enjoyed in getting to know Anna so much!
Seaman and Stephen are good characters too!
I learned quite a bit from this story and I was also able to take something with me after I finished it.
I didn't want the story to end. I'm still thinking about those characters.
This new and upcoming author has a wonderful way with words and a style of writing that pulled me into Anna's story before I knew it!
The scenery was gorgeous and I felt like I was there.
I truly enjoyed the history of the Claddag ring and a few other historical facts along the way.
5 stars for a well written story!
My thanks for a copy of this book. I was NOT required to write a positive review. All opinions are my own.
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