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Brooklyn

Brooklyn - Colm Tóibín A lovely Bank Holiday read for St Patrick's weekend and a book where the past comes to life through fiction and yet for many Irish Immigrants this story paints a vivid picture of life in small towns in rural Ireland in the 50s and 60s, the ties to family and the pull of what is familiar and the duty we feel towards family.

I think this book means a lot to me on a personal level as it is very silimiar to my aunt's story and therefore as real as it gets for an immigrant's account and my aunt who is now in her late Eighties reminisces about her experoemces with such honestly and clarity and passion that I actually feel this book could have been written about her. She did see the movie Brooklyn and was amazed at how close this story compares with her own experiences as obviously she emeigrated to America and returned to Ireland after a few years.

Brooklyn tells the story of a young woman in 1950s who makes the journey across the ocean from Ireland to America as many many Irish women have done in the past in the attempt to make a better life for herself. Eilis Lacey has come of age in a small town in Ireland and when the offer to emmigrate to America is offered to her she takes the change to see what life on the other side of the world has to offer.

I am so glad I chose this one as a re-read for St. Patrick's weekend, loved the characterisation and the elegance of the story will stay with me. Colm Tobin's writing is vivid and elegant and captures the atmosphere of the time very well without being twee.

A book that means a lot to me and I really enjoyed the movie as well.