This novel covers the years 1885 to 1916 in Ireland. It follows the life of a fictional character, Conor Larkin, who is caught up in the struggle for Irish independence from oppressive British rule and religious bigotry. It is a very readable and interesting book from a well-known and respected storyteller. If you enjoy historical fiction, this is a very good book for you.
Although it started off a bit slow, now that I have read the whole book I realize the importance of setting up the opening scene so that the reader will have a vivid sense of the setting as the story gets really good. I learned the interesting and unfair history of Ireland from this book in a way that I could never appreciate from a history book. I am grateful that it was recommended to me and that I was able to have the experience of reading this unforgettable story. Uris made me believe in the hero's cause and feel the injustices done to Ireland's people as if I was one of them. If you like this book you will want to also read Redemption.
I read the first 40 pages of this book about 4 times. I kept getting distracted, waiting too long to pick it up again and needing to start over. This is not a fast read. When I finally got past the beginning, I could not put it down. I longed for the time when I could read again, and thought about the characters all day. This book is epic, spanning over many generations. It will cause you to fall in love with an entire culture, not just a character or even a family.
When this book ended, I grieved the loss of reading it. It was that good.