Brooklyn by Colm Toibin



Brooklyn, an historical novel set in the 1950's from Ireland to Brooklyn and back.  It was very interesting in an historical sense, and Colm certainly has done his homework with understanding the times, however, it is not a novel that really stayed with me once I put it down.

The story is based around Ellis, who lives with her mother and sister Rose in a small Irish rural town, Enniscorth. Rose is older than Ellis and employed, living a full and fanciful life.  Ellis only dreams of living in her sister's footsteps.  Rose arranges for Ellis to go over to Brooklyn by passage to Brooklyn for a better chance of a bookkeeping career than in Ireland.  Ellis settles into life in Brooklyn, albeit incredibly homesick, whilst not daring to let anyone at home know that she is homesick.  Colm keeps the pace of the story going so that I was entranced in Ellis' life, wanting to know what was happening with her life as she discovered more and more of this curious American life, trying to fit into it as an Irish young woman.  

It is a good page turner and great historical piece, a nice love story, and a piece that gives context to Ireland, Brooklyn and the immigrants to America at the time.  



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