Rating: 4 of 5 stars
Source: Received to Review
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Book Description: Twenty five year old Hailey Crossan takes a trip to Ireland during her sabbatical from the Los Angeles record business. While on the trip, she is unexpectedly offered a job in the Irish music business that is too good to turn down, so she decides to stay.
Although Hailey works in Galway City, she lives in the rural area of Connemara, an area steeped in history and famous for its Irish traditional music. When Hailey meets famous Irish traditional musician, Liam Hennessey, a confusing relationship begins, which Hailey thinks may be the result of their differing cultures,for Liam is married to the music, and so unbalanced at the prospect of love, that he won't come closer nor completely go away. And so begins the push and pull of an attraction that Hailey struggles to decipher. Thankfully, a handful of local friends come to her aid, and Hailey comes to love a land and its people-- both with more charm than she ever imagined.
My thoughts: Dancing to An Irish Reel is a book about discovery. Hailey visits Ireland and stays. She immerses herself into the country and the people. She falls in love with the culture and the music of Ireland. She also falls for a local musician, Liam.
Their relationship is complicated. Liam fully immerses himself in his music. The music lives through him. He is more of a loner. He doesn't give of himself and his emotions to others. Hailey is a puzzle to him to figure out. He doesn't know how to handle the building emotions between them.
The story is written in the first person. It is Hailey reminiscing and telling her story. The story has a melancholy feel to it. I'm not sure if it felt that way to me because of the rain, poetry, and music.
I loved reading the culture of Ireland. The people are steeped in their heritage. It is as if the land has a mind and will of it's own. It completely captures my imagination. It is a place where I would love to visit someday and experience for myself.
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I participated in a blog tour of this book earlier this week. If you would like to read an excerpt, click on this LINK.
About the Author: Claire Fullerton is an award winning essayist, a magazine contributor, a former newspaper columnist, and a four time contributor to the “Chicken Soup for the Soul” book series. She hails from Memphis, Tn. and now lives in Malibu California. “Dancing to an Irish Reel” is her second novel.