Another Review from NetGalley. Thank you!!!

Posted: May 9, 2018 in World On The Edge

Another Review from NetGalley.
Thank you, Educator 269454!

“The Wind That Shakes the Corn: Memoirs of a Scots Irish Woman” is a historical fiction read based upon the life of Eleanor Dugan Parke, eighth great grandmother of author Kaye Park Hinckley. The story that unfolds combines extensive research, family stories handed down for generations as well as fictional embellishments. Eleanor (Nell) was four years old when the English hung her ma and the priest ma was harboring. Why were blameless people killed in 1700 Ireland? The English Crown ruled with an iron fist. The Irish had no rights. They could not own property, vote or attend mass. The Crown sent Presbyterian gentry from Scotland to control Irish land.

Using first person narrative, Nell describes squalid farm life where sheep died from disease and rents were often raised. Nell’s life was one of constant turmoil. We travel with Nell as the English seemingly try to “cleanse” Ireland. On Nell’s wedding night to Arthur Parke, many Irish Catholic and Scots Presbyterian men are killed while women and children are forced aboard ships bound for St. Kitts to work a ten year term of indenture. They experience “the vandalism of dignity”. The worst is yet to come. Nell promised ma there would be retribution doled out to the English. She felt an emptiness, a void that could never be filled. Would forgiveness even be possible?

In “The Wind That Shakes the Corn” we follow Nell through the eighteenth century as she continues her journey eventually arriving in America during the time leading up to the Revolutionary War. Different types of oppression occur in the new land as the colonists seek freedom from English rule.

Author Hinckley has written a novel brimming with many historical facts, however, this reader would not call the tome a memoir. The novel is arguably heavily based upon her eighth great grandmother who lived for ninety nine years. Imaginings include chance encounters, coincidences that seem highly unlikely. That said, this reader found the tome to be a very enjoyable 4 star read.

Thank you Prytania Publishing and Net Galley for the opportunity to read and review “The Wind That Shakes the Corn”.

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