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Irish Cream : A Nuala Anne McGrail Novel (Nuala McGrail Mystery) Hardcover – Bargain Price, February 1, 2005

4.4 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Hardcover, Bargain Price, February 1, 2005
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In the eighth installment in Greeley's immensely entertaining Irish series (after 2002's Irish Stew!), Nuala Anne and her husband, Dermot Coyne, once again look into mysteries past and present: the first chronicled in the diaries of Father Richard Lonigan, a 19th-century parish priest in Donegal, Ireland, the second involving poor Damian "Day" O'Sullivan, whom the couple hire to take care of their two Irish wolfhounds. Amid the troubled political and religious environment in Donegal, where mostly poor Catholic villagers are overseen by Protestant Lord Skeffington, Father Lonigan investigates two shootings while striving to prevent further violence. In present-day Chicago, Nuala and Dermot face opposition to hiring Day O'Sullivan from the lad's father, since Day is not only a profound disappointment to the O'Sullivan family but also a convicted felon. The "fey" or psychic Nuala Anne believes the young man has been framed by his family and is determined to find out why Day inspires such loathing and disgust in his own kin. As with previous titles in the series, the sexual antics of Nuala and Dermot lend spice.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Greeley continues to churn out his own brand of irresistibly predictable mysteries at an amazingly rapid pace. Although the plot and the characters are somewhat cliched, they provide a cozy level of comfort for fans eager to delve into another caper involving devoted spouses and dueling detectives Nuala Anne McGrail and Dermot Michael Coyne. As usual, it is a simple case of good Irish-American Catholics versus evil Irish-American Catholics. Gentle, artistic Damian "Day" O'Sullivan has been made the scapegoat for all his family's shortcomings. When a friend of his father is run over and killed, an inebriated Day is eagerly offered to the police as a sacrificial lamb by his parents and siblings. After Day becomes an honorary member of the Coyne clan, Nuala and Dermot are determined to prove his innocence by using their stock-in-trade: an unbeatable combination of Dermot's cold, hard logic and Nuala's mystical second sight. Interwoven into the contemporary story is an intriguing historical whodunit that adds a little more substance. Margaret Flanagan
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • ISBN-10: 0765303353
  • ASIN: B000FUTQ1Y
  • Product Dimensions: 9.2 x 6.1 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,975,509 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

A native of Chicago, Father Andrew M. Greeley, is a priest, distinguished sociologist and bestselling author. He is professor of social sciences at the University of Chicago and the University of Arizona, as well as Research Associate at the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago. His current sociological research focuses on current issues facing the Catholic Church-including celibacy of priests, ordination of women, religious imagination, and sexual behavior of Catholics.Father Greeley received the S.T.L. in 1954 from St. Mary of Lake Seminary. His graduate work was done at the University of Chicago, where he received the M.A. Degree in 1961 and the Ph.D. in 1962.Father Greeley has written scores of books and hundreds of popular and scholarly articles on a variety of issues in sociology, education and religion. His column on political, church and social issues is carried by the Chicago Sun Times and many other newspapers. He stimulates discussion of neglected issues and often anticipates sociological trends. He is the author of more than thirty bestselling novels and an autobiography, Furthermore!: Confessions of a Parish Priest.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Father Andrew Greeley, Supreme Seanchai of Chicago's SouthSide Irish and beyond, delights the reader with another brilliant episode of the fair fey Nuala Anne McGrail Coyne & friends & family. Sure, but shouldn't you best begin at the beginning? It begins with *Irish Gold.*

In *Irish Cream,* Fr Greeley has again interwoven a compelling historical tale with the modern day trials and tribulations of the Coynes. But this time the historical tie-in is clumsy and the flips and flops back and forth are disconcerting - one would think especially for the reader unfamiliar with Fr. Greeley's conventions. And by now in the Greeley oeuvre, what with everyone making cameos in everyone else's serials, you best be reading Bishop Blackwood ("Blackie") Ryan in the *Happy are ...* books and "the crazy O'Malleys" of *A Midwinter's Tale* etc.

So, what are ya doin' still sittin' there staring at your computer screen? Get reading!

P.S.: Yo! Old White Men in Rome! Elect Father Greeley for Pope! You'd be amazed at the return of the abused, disenchanted & disenfranchised back to the pews and our tithes back to the collection basket!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Irish Cream, the continuing story of Nuala Anne McGrail and her family, is set in Chicago and Grand Beach, Michigan. As is common in this series, Nuala Anne must investigate two situations: one current and one historical.

The current situation concerns a young man Damian O-Sullivan, nicknamed Day, who has become the black sheep of his family. Nuala senses that his image is wrong and is determined to rectify it.

The historical situation is told through the diary of Father Richard Lonigan, parish priest in Donegal Ireland. Father Richard, a cultured man with a doctorate, struggles to understand and minister to the poor rural Irish of his parish. His efforts pit him against the "ribbon men", the Protestant Vicar, the English lord, and many of his parishioners. His attitude is "if they don't like me it is their problem."

There are two features that I especially like about this novel: the caring affinity among the characters, and the bits of wisdom Andrew Greeley puts into the dialogue.

The Coynes, Nuala Anne, Dermot, Nelliecoyne, Matthew, and Socra Marie are a delightful family. Nuala and Dermot are still in love after three children and several years of marriage. Nelliecoyne is a very bright young girl who is "fey" like her mother. Matt is all boy and quietly ignores his sisters. Socra Marie is a fun two year old who loves the doggies and most people. The loving relationship of this family makes the book.

Andrew Greeley provides some nice wisdom in this story. Bishop Blackie on Memorial Day asks whether "the tombstones or flowers are more ultimate"? Later Blackie is quoted as saying that "One does not waste one's time trying to figure out the plans of the Lord God".
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Format: Hardcover
I've read a couple of Father Greeley's Bishop Blackie mysteries and kind of liked them, so I thought I'd give Nuala McGrail a try.

Nuala Anne McGrail is an Irish songstress who also happens to have "the sight." Her husband Dermot Michael Coyle is a sort of Watson to her Sherlock. The characters are an absolute delight, especially the self-deprecatory Dermot and his youngest daughter, two-year-old Socra Marie. Six-year-old Nelliecoyne and four-year-old Michael "The Mick" round out the family. Nuala is originally from Galway; Dermot is second generation. His brother, a Catholic priest, works for Bishop Blackie. Father Greeley does an excellent job with the Irish dialect; he even explains how to speak it.

IRISH CREAM is really two novels rolled into one. The first involves the O'Sullivan family who are trying to scapegoat their youngest, Damian "Day" O'Sullivan, for the murder of their father's business partner. The Irish Cream in the title has to do with John Patrick O'Sullivan's inordinate pride in his four oldest children. He is also a Notre Dame booster and likes to "tilt the field" in respect to his business enterprises.

The second story revolves around Father Dick Lonigan, whose memoir Dermot is reading. Father Dick was a parish priest in Donegal shortly after the Potato Famine. The Irish peasants are rather like sharecroppers in the American South, and Father Dick mediates when they clash with the English landowners. He is also fighting the paganism that still survives in Donegal. The conflict in this story involves the murder of English landowner Lord Skeffington's caretaker, Tim Allen, and later an attempt on Skeffington's life as well. Father Dick is also pining over his housekeeper Mrs. O'Flynn.
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Format: Hardcover
I agree with most of the other reviews, good, bad or otherwise. You have to take this book for what it is, light hearted fare and entertainment without a lot of heavy lifting. SEXUAL ANTICS! Yes, lots of that, surprising that a priest can write all of this stuff. Must hear it in the confessional???????? Anyway, NOT BEING IRISH MYSELF gives me a different slant. Maybe if YOU ARE genuinely IRISH, this will be too much a caricature of Irish folk for you. However, for me, it was delightful, bringing to life the IRISH of the South Side of Chicago. Also, there is a portion of the novel that takes place in IRELAND too so there is a connection between the characters of their home in Chicago and their other former home in IRELAND. This thematic connective device is actually quite creative from a writing perspective I believe and quite ingenius as it helps flesh out the characters. There is one character though that is not well developed and that is the "Mick", the son of Nuala and Dermot. There are off handed references to the boy but you wont get the sense that you know him as a character as you do with the much better developed daughter characters. That is a minor complaint though.
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