My Dream of You

By Nuala O'Faolain
(Riverhead Hardcover, Hardcover, 9781573221771, 480pp.)

Publication Date: February 19, 2001

Other Editions of This Title: Compact Disc, Paperback

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Description
"My Dream Of You" is a contemporary love story wrapped around an historical love story, both equally gripping and full of relevant truths about love, passion, adversity, and human nature. The historical tale is set during the latter years of the Famine and is based on the true story of a British landlord who divorced his wife on the grounds that she conducted a three-year affair with a lowly Irish groom. The contemporary narrative tells the story of Kathleen de Burca, a woman in midlife coming to terms with loss and her unconsummated yearning for the salvation she imagines only passionate love can deliver. On the eve of turning 50, and after a series of disappointments, Kathleen decides to return to Ireland for the first time in 30 years. She's taken a leave from her glamorous yet unfulfilling job as a travel writer to investigate the story of the Talbot divorce -- an account she's known of since her student days that dramatically captured the Famine era and the clashes between the native Irish and the English gentry. What really draws her to the Talbot story, however, is its romantic core -- how passion between two unlikely parties could have flowered and thrived in such desperate times, and ultimately at a tragic cost -- and the hope that somehow the Talbot story will yield truths about love and desire that will help her to make sense of her own heart's journey. Kathleen's return to Ireland also forces her to reconsider the country and the family she fled as a young woman of twenty, running for her very life, and to make peace with the ghosts who were never far behind.

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