The final book in the famine trilogy For Eily, Michael and Peggy the memory of the famine is still strong. But Mary-Brigid, Eily's first child, has the future to look forward to. What kind of future is it? Ireland is in turmoil, with evictions, burnings, secret meetings, fights over land. Eily and her family may be thrown off their farm. Michael may lose his job in the big house. And Peggy, in America, feels trapped in her role as a maid. Will they ever have land and a home they can call their own? Eily, Michael and Peggy have once shown great courage. Now this courage is called on again … The other titles in the Famine trilogy are Under the Hawthorn Tree and Wildflower Girl. A study guide to Under the Hawthorn tree is also available.
The author's vivid memories of growing up on a small family farm in rural New York State amidst the "green fields of home" provides the setting for captivating stories of a boyhood from a simpler time. It was a time of small towns and small farms, hard physical work and cooperation, of family gatherings and warmth. Each chapter tells a story-sometimes humorous, sometimes harrowing-but always through the lens of family support and love. This is also the story of life on a farm when work horses were still a major source of power. The farm operations through the seasons are recalled in vivid detail. The past comes alive for readers long removed from daily contact with the land. It is evident that life in the country instilled a love of outdoors and nature in the young boy who eventually became a Professor of Biological Sciences-Ecology.