The Gaelic Letters: a Novel of the Almost Perfect Crime by R. Thomas Roe (Signalman Pub., Kissimmee, Florida, c. 2010)
What genealogists doesn’t love a good mystery? After all, that’s what forms the basis of our research– trying to unravel the mysteries in our ancestry by searching for clues. And a good mystery is exactly what I discovered in this book by R. Thomas Roe.
When retired attorney Quinn Parker discovers a packet of letters written a century earlier, he begins the process of searching for his Irish ancestors. The process entails having the Gaelic language letters translated and a journey of suspense and a trip to Ireland ensues.
Were the letters Quinn discovered authentic, or was there forgery involved? And why does he have the uncanny feeling he is being followed on the Emerald Isle? His grandfather Jeremiah Desmond emigrated to the USA, but were there other relatives still in Ireland?
For me, this was a book that held my interest to the very end. Since I read the Kindle version, it could best be described not as a page-turner, but as a “screen swiper.”
The story outlines the genealogy methods used to trace the Desmond family history, but the reader is not lost in the details. Rather, the story builds on the results of those findings and how one branch of the Desmond family’s fortune is threatened. Then add in the political factions between Ulster and the Republic of Ireland and you’ll soon be surprised by some of the unexpected turns the story takes. Intrigue abounds!
In this fictional account, the ancestral town is given as Kinsdale– a mere sixty miles from where my husband’s real ancestors lived in Rosscarbery, County Cork!
My Callaghans, Harringtons, Greenes, and Kellys do not appear in this story … guess that tale remains to be told!