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In The Time Of Famine Paperback – July 26, 2011
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About the Author
Michael Grant joined the NYPD in 1962. He worked as a police officer in the Tactical Patrol Force and the Accident Investigation Squad. Upon being promoted to sergeant, he worked in the 63rd Precinct, the Inspections Division, and finally the Police Academy. As a lieutenant, he worked in the 17th Precinct and finished up his career as the Commanding Officer of the Traffic Division's Field Internal Affairs Unit. He retired in 1985 and went to work for W.R. Grace Company as a Security Coordinator. Mr. Grant has a BS in Criminal Justice and an MA in psychology from John Jay College. He is also a graduate of the FBI National Academy. In 1990, Mr. Grant moved to Florida where he wrote his first three novels: Line of Duty, Officer Down, and Retribution. In 2006 he returned to Long Island where he has written four novels: The Cove, Back To Venice, When I Come Home, and In The Time of Famine.
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The characters in this book, whether they be canvas background characters or main characters, are well rounded and written in a manner that they come to life as one reads along. Their journey in the strife of Ireland becomes the reader's journey.
Mix the historical aspect to the characters re-living it out and this becomes a facinating book to read! The first evening I started this book, I ended up staying up all night reading!I very rarely find a book that keeps me up into the wee hours of the night/morning.
For the $2.99 cost of the Kindle version, it is SO worth it! After finshing the conclusion of this book, I felt that it could have been a book that I'd have been willing to pay $9.99 for!
So take a chance for $2.99 and dive in!
In the Time of Famine, by Michael Grant, was not the first book I've read about the famine and the troubles that ensued, but probably one of the most disturbing. The book focuses on one particular family and how they handled the potato famine. The story becomes personal because the protagonist and his family became people I cared about, as did the neighbors, and even the landlord who in the end supported them. He falls in love with the landlord's daughter who slowly becomes humanized if not enlightened to what is going on as even they are ravaged by the dictates of British society and the uncompromising rules of Charles Trevelyan.
Trevelyan's immovable decisions, lack of food, miserable conditions, so many Irish immigrants were forced by the Crown and landlords to board what was known as "coffin ships". Some made it, and so many did not. In The Time of Famine, by Mr. Grant brings to light in form of an historical novel the truth of what went on in this deplorable time.
One by one the rest of the family had died, either of hunger or the fever. The old grandmother was the first, asking to be taken to the workhouse before she died, so that she would have a coffin.
Little did she know that although she would be placed in a coffin for the family to see her for the last time, when she reached the gravesite, a lever would be pulled on the underside of the coffin and she would be tumbled into a mass grave along with others who had died that day. It was only because her grandson had turned to offer the grave diggers a coin, that he saw what was to happen. The workhouse didn't have individual coffins, there was only ONE coffin that the dead were placed in, for the benefit of the family who came to say their goodbye's to their beloved departed.
This was a page turning book for me. I red it in one day. Anyone who has an interest in history, especially Irish history, will find it an interesting, yet soul destroying depiction of life in that time. The famine lasted for five years, and it wasn't till something like forty years later that a reason for the rotting potatoes was discovered.