The Wild Geese Book 7
by Cynthia Owens
Genre: Historical Romance
Like the Wild Geese of Old Ireland, five boys grew to manhood despite hunger, war, and the mean
streets of New York
The War had left him blind to beauty…
Kieran Donnelly is a gifted artist who has sworn never to paint again. He saw and did too many things during the war to extinguish the ugliness that lies in his heart. But a chance to work with some of the most magnificent paintings brings him close to the world he still loves…and an extraordinary woman who sees his true heart.
Darkness couldn’t extinguish the light in her heart.
Blind from the age of four, Emily Lawrence yearns to experience the outside world. When she hires Kieran Donnelly to catalogue her father’s paintings, he offers her a glimpse at life outside her exquisite home…and a chance for a future.
Can Kieran and Emily emerge from the darkness to find happiness and love?
**easily read as a standalone!**
Amazon * B&N
Queenstown Harbor, Cork, Ireland, 1847
“Take your fill of it, lad. Remember it all.”
Ten-year-old Kieran Donnelly clutched the icy metal of the ship’s railing, his gaze locked on the wild, rocky coast as the Sally Malone moved slowly out of the harbor.
The long voyage to America had begun.
He heard Gran’s keening wail, filled with grief as she lamented the loss of their homeland. Da’s hand rested on her shoulder, his silent grief palpable. His brother’s spirit, full of anger and despair, reached out to him.
None of it touched his heart.
His eager gaze sought the mist-shrouded green hills, distant, dotted with tiny white cottages. Empty cottages, no sign of the ever-present gray turf smoke rising from their rich, dark thatched roofs. The fields were black with the stinking slime of the blight, but hawthorn and gorse and wild strawberries still dotted the landscape with bright splotches of white, yellow, and scarlet.
The water bucked and spat white-capped waves, gray-green with angry sorrow under the cloud-smudged sky. A single bright ray of sunlight broke through the clouds, as if to bid the desperate refugees a fond farewell. A patch of sky, so pure a blue it made his throat ache, brought a rush of tears to Kieran’s eyes.
Oh, to capture the image that would forever be in his mind on paper before the ship sailed! The colors, the hues, the light and shadow. The crowds of skeletal people scurrying about, weeping as they waved good-bye, the lone fiddler playing them away with a desolate lament of parting and grief.
One day. He struggled against the harsh sob that clawed at his throat. One day I’ll paint this scene and the whole world will know the sorrow that gripped Ireland in its cruel fist.
I’ll call it The Parting.
I believe I was destined to be interested in history. One of my distant ancestors, Thomas Aubert, reportedly sailed up the St. Lawrence River to discover Canada some 26 years before Jacques Cartier's 1534 voyage. Another relative was a 17thCentury "King's Girl," one of a group of young unmarried girls sent to New France (now the province of Quebec) as brides for the habitants (settlers) there. My passion for reading made me long to write books like the ones I enjoyed, and I tried penning sequels to my favorite Nancy Drew mysteries. Later, fancying myself a female version of Andrew Lloyd Weber, I drafted a musical set in Paris during WWII.
A former journalist and lifelong Celtophile, I enjoyed a previous career as a reporter/editor for a small chain of community newspapers before returning to my first love, romantic fiction. My stories usually include an Irish setting, hero or heroine, and sometimes all three!
I am a member of the Romance Writers of America, Hearts Through History Romance Writers, and Celtic Hearts Romance Writers. A lifelong resident of Montreal, Canada, I still live there with my own Celtic hero and our two teenaged children.
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