Now & Then
Avon, Jun 23 2009, $13.99
Former lawyer Anna O’Shea returns from a vacation in Ireland when her brother Patrick asks her for a favor that he cannot do as he is injured from a car accident. He wants her to pick up his sixteen years old son Joe from a Newark jail. She goes from the airport to the jail and takes Joe to her home after getting his release.
In the middle of the night, Anna finds Joe searching her still unpacked luggage. He is especially enthralled by some cloth Anna bought overseas. When she angrily grabs at the cloth, aunt and nephew are transported to Ireland prior to the infamous Great Potato Famine. As they acclimate poorly to being over a century and a half from their time, Anna joins an Irish smuggling cartel begins to fall in love with a rebel cartographer while Joe is attracted to a beautiful teen.
In some ways Madigan the Irish wolfhound steals the show in this enjoyable time travel romance in which the twenty-first century aunt and nephew struggle with life in nineteenth century Ireland in which plugged in means nothing. The story line is fast-paced as romance and magic help Anna and Joe overcome the lack of a Starbucks or electronic gizmos. However, even with love everywhere, the anchor to this fine tale is the deep look at Irish-British strife that forces the newcomers to take sides.