Book review: Irish Meadows, by Susan Anne Mason

irish meadows

From the Back Cover

1911, Long Island, New York

Faced With an Uncertain Future, Sometimes All You Have Left Is the Courage to Dream

Brianna and Colleen O’Leary know their Irish immigrant father expects them to marry well. Recently he’s put even more pressure on them, insinuating that the very future of their Long Island horse farm, Irish Meadows, rests in their ability to land prosperous husbands. Both girls, however, have different visions for their futures.

Brianna, a quiet girl with a quick mind, dreams of attending college. Vivacious Colleen, meanwhile, is happy to marry–as long as her father’s choice meets her exacting standards of the ideal groom. When former stable hand Gilbert Whelan returns from business school and distant relative Rylan Montgomery visits Long Island during his seminary training, the two men quickly complicate everyone’s plans.

As the farm slips ever closer to ruin, James O’Leary grows more desperate. It will take every ounce of courage for both sisters to avoid being pawns in their father’s machinations and instead follow their hearts. And even if they do, will they inevitably find their dreams too distant to reach?

“Mason’s Courage to Dream debut about the O’Leary sisters’ love entanglements brings readers early American romance at its finest.”–RT Book Reviews

“This engaging debut is part historical romance, part family drama, and all about the power of faith and love to move mountains. The spirited O’Leary clan is well drawn and appealing, ready to band together during times of trouble. Mason’s enjoyable read lays the groundwork for the next installment, which promises to be just as strong as the first.”–Library Journal starred review

About the Author

Susan Anne Mason’s debut historical novel, Irish Meadows, won the Fiction from the Heartland contest from the Mid-American Romance Authors Chapter of RWA. A member of ACFW, as well, she lives outside of Toronto, Ontario, with her husband and two children. She can be found online at http://www.susanannemason.com.

My thoughts:

I enjoy reading historical fiction for several reasons. One reason is that I sometimes learn something while reading a fictional story.

I believe Susan Anne Mason did an excellent job of mingling her fictional tale with the history of that era. While not as deep into the history as some writers, I still came away with a feeling for the time period.

For being a debut novel, the author did a admirable job of not only writing an engaging story but setting her voice. I would definitely read other books that she may write. Since this is book 1 in “Courage to Dream”, I would image there will be more to follow. 🙂

Her characters are believable and I was eager to see how things turned out in their lives.

This is a book to put on your TBR (to be read) list.

Five out of five stars.

Bethany House Publishers provided a copy of the book for my honest review.


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About Norma Downing

Christian romance author Norma Downing has been writing for years. She writes both contemporary and historical. She currently has a contract with CrossLink Publishing for her first novel, A Promise Made, set in Kansas in 1899.
This entry was posted in Bethany House Publishers, book review, Christian fiction, HIstorical romance, Irish Meadows, Susan Anne Mason and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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