Longing for Home

by Sarah M. Eden

Longing for Home
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2013 Novel of the Year

“An engaging and heart-warming story.” —Julianne Donaldson, bestselling author of Edenbrooke

Though she was only a child during the darkest days of Ireland’s Great Famine, Katie Macauley feels responsible for the loss of her family’s land and the death of her sister. Now a woman grown, Katie has left Ireland for America and the promise of earning money enough to return home again and plead for her family’s forgiveness. She arrives in Hope Springs, Wyoming Territory, a town sharply divided between the Americans who have settled there, with their deep hatred of the Irish, and the Irish immigrants who have come searching for a place to call home. Her arrival tips the precarious balance, and the feud erupts anew. Even in the midst of hatred and violence, however, Katie finds reason to hope. Two men, as different as they are intriguing, vie for her heart, turning her thoughts for the first time toward a future away from Ireland. Katie must now make the hardest decision of her life: stay and give her heart a chance at love, or return home and give her soul the possibility of peace.

Reviews

Average rating

based upon 26 reviews
Interesting
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Katie Macauley has need for money, and she's taken a job out West in the United States. Things are far different from her native Ireland, but she knows she can make it. Things get even more complicated once she gets there. There is a feud going on between the Irish and everyone else around. Her perspective employer doesn't want to keep his word on her job because she's Irish. He also has kids which was not in Katie's job description. There is also the matter of one persistent and sometimes annoying (yet handsome) Irish boy. This may all prove to be more than Katie can handle as she fights her past to secure a future.

I enjoyed this book. Katie was a spunky character who was still a bit haunted by past events. She had some depth and an interesting personality. Katie is torn between two men-her employer Joseph Archer and the young Irish lad who keeps coming to her rescue Tavish O'Connor. I didn't really get why she was torn, because I know who I would have picked (and she did) early on. Choose the obvious choice Katie! In any case, that for me was really just secondary to the real story of the book, the horrible prejudice against the Irish in the area.

As we revisit the past we can see things that were awful, and this type of thing is one of them. Worried that the Irish were taking over "their land," the other local townsfolk treat them horribly. The Irish are at something of a disadvantage as in Ireland many of them were also very poor and lacked the ability to better themselves. Coming to the US they hoped for a better chance at life. The other people in town don't want to give them a chance though. Katie becomes the symbol of the feud, being employed by a non-Irish man (and getting his attention) all while being very Irish herself. This hatred really just continued to grow for a long time, and honestly doesn't quite get resolved in the end. I like that. Overall I found this book to be fun in parts and frightening in others, and I think that history buffs, romance lovers, and fans of the Irish will all enjoy this book.

Book provided for review.

Proper!
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Longing For Homenofollow is definitely a “proper” romance! Passion, turmoil, love triangles, tragic back stories and NOTHING that would keep my ten year old from reading it. The budding relationships between Katie and her gentlemanly suitors are wonderful to read. I loved seeing Katie transform from a hardened and suspicious girl to a trusting and caring woman. Having to face and share the horrible experiences of the famine and the strange and heartbreaking relationship with her parents make you ponder what it really means to be “family”, and what it means to truly love. I have to admit, I was kind of rooting for the other guy but I was happy for Katie in the end regardless. And I was extra happy when I learned that there is a sequel in the works!

Great Historical Fiction
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I have loved all of Sarah Eden's books and was excited about her new novel, Longing for Home. As always, Sarah Eden has written a beautiful story that was a delight to read. I am awaiting the sequel so that loose threads in the story line can be resolved. Having said all that, however, I have to say that I have enjoyed her regency novels a bit more than this one. But that is just my preference. This is a well written, clean, enjoyable read.

From beginning to the ending it is very enjoyable
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I love to read Sarah Eden's books, I'm able to learn as I'm having fun reading her books. In this book I was able to feel all the emotions of the characters as they faced many trials. I loved learning about the way the Irish were treated. I became so engrossed in this book, I couldn't put it down. it's an Irish romance, even the dialogue is true to the Irish. it takes place here in America. There are some twists in the story that make not sure how it will end. I highly recommend this book to everyone, you will enjoy it also.

Beautiful story
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

This is a beautifully written book. Kate is a young lady who has regrets from her past. She is seeking a way to return home when she finds her way to a small town in Wyoming. Her task is simple, take the housekeeping job and earn the money to redeem herself.

As always, life is never as simple as you hope it will be. She finds herself in the middle of a war between the Irish and the rest of the population of the town. For me it is hard to fathom such a deep level of persecution. The hatred that the townspeople had for the Irish was built upon flawed concepts and logic.

Ok, my little rant is over. The events lead to a book that gave hope for the future. Kate was inspirational to most of the people around her. Her unfailing belief in the good in people and the determination to succeed pulled this story along.

I was torn between her two love interests, because both men are noble. Either one of them would have given her a happy life and love, something that she needed in her life. I do like the way the book ended.

This book is a great historical fiction romance. It is clean, it is suitable for the young and the young at heart. (Or anyone who wants to read a good romance.)

A Proper Romance from a talented writer
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

First off, let me tell you that Sarah is a phenomenal writer. I have loved every book she has written. Her attention to detail and incredible gift at crafting historical romances never ceases to amaze me.

After reading Longing For Home, I have a hankering to visit Ireland, and I'm betting you will too! I love a good romance, but the plot must have some meat in it for me to chew on while reading. Sarah provides a backdrop from history of the discrimination the Irish faced upon landing on American soil. Katie is a heroine full of spunk and Irish fire and I loved everything she had to say.

This book will warm your heart, stir the embers of history, and leave you longing for more which I hear Sarah will deliver in the sequel.

Loved it, but it didn't end!
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I loved Sarah Eden's new book,"Longing For Home," but I was so disappointed that it didn't end! Guess I'll have to wait until next year... The book was wonderful though and kept me up way too late each night! I love how I can enjoy the story as well as be educated to what life was like for Irish immigrants at that time in history. I learn so much from Sarah's books. I find myself very immersed in the characters as well. This book is no different. Definitely worth the read and highly recommended!

A proper romance
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I always love a beautiful romantic story so I was delighted to read Longing for Home by Sarah Eden. This was a really fun and engaging story about a girl named Katie Macauley trying to find her home. The title definitely fit the entire story as Katie struggled with trying to fit in and belong. It was a touching story and all I wanted to do was hug Katie and tell her that things would change and get better. It was neat to read about the Irish but I wanted everyone to get along. Why can't we just all be friends. It would make life so much easier!!!

Although I didn't want the story to end..it did, but the best part about Longing for Home is that there will be a sequel coming Spring of 2014. I'm definitely looking forward to the next book. I guess I'll have to check out some of Sarah's other books as I'm waiting for the sequel. Sarah Eden is a remarkable writer and I'm so glad I stumbled across one of her books. What a great opportunity!!! I know you will all enjoy reading Longing for Home.

Love this amazing book
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Katie was a young girl during Ireland's potato famine. She still feels responsible for her father losing his farm and also for the death of her younger sister. Katie is on her way to Wyoming to be a housekeeper for an older gentleman, Mr Archer, that she's never met. She's finally almost to her destination when she meets handsome Tavish O'Connor. Katie wants nothing to do with him and treats him accordingly. Unfortunately, the older gentleman that she thought she was going to be working for is nowhere to be found. Mr. Archer is a young widower with two young girls that he expects his housekeeper to care for. Still feeling guilty for her younger sister's death, Katie doesn't trust herself to care for young children and avoids them as much as she can. Because of Katie's feelings about children, as well as the war between the Irish of the town and the non-Irish, Mr Archer doesn't feel that he can honor his deal with Katie and allow her to work for him. Katie is devastated, she had planned on that money to be able to return to Ireland and re-purchase her family's farm for her father, so she convinces him to allow her to work as just a housekeeper at a reduced salary and only until he can find a new housekeeper. What she doesn't count on is her growing feelings for Mr Archer, Tavish and the entire town. Will Katie be able to find peace in this less than peaceful town?

I LOVED this book! Sarah M Eden is one of my very favorite authors. Her books are always full of great characters. I especially liked Katie, she tried to be such a grouch, especially to Tavish, but it's readily apparent to the reader just how much she's hurting inside and her multitude of reasons for coming across as a shrew. I liked the people that she's friends with too. The dynamic of the town was really interesting, with the feud between the Irish and the non-Irish. I really enjoyed it, even though there was a lot of conflict. I was thrilled with the ending too, it was perfect! This book is the newest in the Proper Romance series that Deseret Book has been selling, as such it's a romantic book, clean and awesome! Don't miss this amazing book by Sarah M Eden!

Fun and Interesting
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Katie Macauley has need for money, and she's taken a job out West in the United States. Things are far different from her native Ireland, but she knows she can make it. Things get even more complicated once she gets there. There is a feud going on between the Irish and everyone else around. Her perspective employer doesn't want to keep his word on her job because she's Irish. He also has kids which was not in Katie's job description. There is also the matter of one persistent and sometimes annoying (yet handsome) Irish boy. This may all prove to be more than Katie can handle as she fights her past to secure a future.

I enjoyed this book. Katie was a spunky character who was still a bit haunted by past events. She had some depth and an interesting personality. Katie is torn between two men-her employer Joseph Archer and the young Irish lad who keeps coming to her rescue Tavish O'Connor. I didn't really get why she was torn, because I know who I would have picked (and she did) early on. Choose the obvious choice Katie! In any case, that for me was really just secondary to the real story of the book, the horrible prejudice against the Irish in the area.

As we revisit the past we can see things that were awful, and this type of thing is one of them. Worried that the Irish were taking over "their land," the other local townsfolk treat them horribly. The Irish are at something of a disadvantage as in Ireland many of them were also very poor and lacked the ability to better themselves. Coming to the US they hoped for a better chance at life. The other people in town don't want to give them a chance though. Katie becomes the symbol of the feud, being employed by a non-Irish man (and getting his attention) all while being very Irish herself. This hatred really just continued to grow for a long time, and honestly doesn't quite get resolved in the end. I like that. Overall I found this book to be fun in parts and frightening in others, and I think that history buffs, romance lovers, and fans of the Irish will all enjoy this book.

Book provided for review.

Emotional
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

5 STARS

Longing For Home tugs on your emotions at least mine. When we look at others in history I think how dumb feuds are. To fight over where you are previous from, your religion or what street you live on. America is supposed to be welcoming, freedom to worship, freedom to improve your lot in life. How stupid people in history are. OH you went to what college? You root for whom? Your Democrat? Republican, Your white? your black? your purple polk dots? Maybe I need to learn more from History!

Katie Macauley comes to a Wyoming Territory in 1870 to be a housekeeper for Joseph Archer. He listens to her talk and fires her right off. He does not want a Irish Housekeeper. He desperately needs a housekeeper for the past six months. His house is a mess. Katie talks her way back into a job. Then finds out he needs the housekeeper to watch his children too. Katie can not watch children! She is fired again.

The town is small. one road is called the red road and those who live on that road hate the Irish. The other fork is where all the Irish live. The town is on the brink of erupting again. Joseph Archer has wanted no part of the feud. He tries really hard to be impartial so he can keep the peace. Having a Irish housekeeper is upsetting the balance. Because that means he has two Irish workers on his place.

Katie then talks Joseph to let her be his housekeeper till he finds a replacement for her which will be in two months. He will only pay her half her wages. Katie moved from East coast because a year at his housekeeper wage she could save enough to go back home to Ireland and buy her family's farm back. Also buy her little sister a headstone. It was her fault at eight that her sister died. She has not seen her family since then they gave her to be a servant and earn her keep at 8.

Ireland was in the potato famine where a lot of people suffered and died. Another million people left Ireland to find homes and places better to live. They came in droves to America for a better chance at life. The old bitterness between English and Irish followed them here. Plus others hated them for different reasons.

The Preacher at Church tried to make Katie tell where she was from so he could send her to sit on the Irish side. She left instead of choosing sides. Everyone had chosen sides except Joseph family on the back row.
The general store had prices for the English and different higher prices for the Irish.

Katie thought what she could do for work after her job was over and she decided to open a bakery. She with the help of Joseph would bake bread and sell it. Joseph said for now she could use his kitchen to bake.

Tavish O'Connor liked teasing Katie. He would flirt with her all the time. His whole family liked her. Tavish had his own berry farm. He was engaged 5 years ago but his fiancé died of flu.
In fact the Irish community admired her for facing off with the preacher. Also she lived on the non Irish side. The Irish wanted to support her bakery. For it would be the only second business that the Irish owned in town. The first was the blacksmith shop.

It soon came to be known that they could buy their bread cheaper from Katie than they could make it. Because Joseph bought the supplies. They even bought special treats once in awhile like cake from Katie.

Joseph owned the whole Wyoming valley. He was everyone's landlord and he used his power to try and keep the peace between the two sides.

Katie could feel her falling for both Joseph and Tavish at the same time. She knew they both were honorable men.
Joseph could not flirt with Katie and wanted her out of his house before he would tell her of his feelings for her.
Katie had a hard life but she was not the only ones and for the first time she had friends that cared for her and a place she could belong too.

I can't wait to read the next book in the series. I hope it comes out sooner than later.

I was given this ebook to read and asked to give honest review of it when finished by NetGalley and Shadow Mountain Publishing.
08/05/2013 Pub Shadow Mountain Publishing 435 pages ISBN-10: 1609074610

An enchanting must-read romance
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Longing For Home is a well-written and satisfying story with endearing characters and a fascinating glimpse of Irish culture in the Old West at a time when prejudice against them prevailed throughout most of the country.

I thoroughly enjoyed Longing For Home and consider it well worth the wait. It is a deeper, more involved story than Sarah’s other books, proving that she has taken her talent for storytelling to an even higher level. The characters are dimensional and real, with histories full of struggle, survival, love, and loss. They are so well-developed I feel as if they are MY family and friends.

The dialogue is wonderful. I could “hear” Katie’s brogue simply because of the words and phrases she uses with very little, if any, phonetical spelling. I appreciate that more than I can say. The use of traditional Irish phrases is enchanting and adds a wonderful lilt to Katie’s voice in my mind. Tavish and Joseph are remarkable, hard-working men with very different personalities and situations yet with the same capacity for love and desire for peace in the community. I love them both and hope that I will get to read more about them in the future.

Experiencing the story through the point-of-view of all three main characters not only gave me a better understanding of their thoughts and motivations, it also made me care about them even more and kept me guessing about how events would unfold. I truly didn’t know how things would turn out for Katie, or even how I wanted them to turn out because I was as torn about what to do as she was. I was unsure about Katie at first, but her growth throughout her experiences in Hope Springs felt natural and I was glad to see how far she had come by the end.

Longing For Home is a must for fans of Sarah M. Eden. Readers who appreciate clean romance and quality writing will want to add this book to the top of their reading lists. Though I don’t often rate books in my reviews, I don’t hesitate to give Longing For Home an appreciative and enthusiastic five stars.

Review originally published on LDS Women's Book Review.

LOVED LOVED LOVED IT!
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I LOVE LOVE LOVE Sarah Eden's books!
I have read EVERY ONE of them!
I LOVE her strong female characters!
I LOVE the sweet and tender romance she includes!
I LOVE reading about the "proper way" in which one had to conduct oneself during that time.
I LOVE how positive her books are!
I just LOVE her writings!

In the past she has always had the setting be during the 1800's in England

In this book it is still 1800's, but the setting is in Wyoming, USA

A time of struggle.
A time of poverty.
A time of feuding.

Katie Maculey has traveled from Ireland to Wyoming in answer to a housekeeping job post.

She has been working and saving since she was 8-years-old in hopes of returning to her Irish roots.

When she arrives in the small Wyoming town of Hope Springs she finds herself in the middle of an ongoing feud between the Irish and the American frontiersmen.

Katie finds herself in not only a love triangle between two wonderful men, but also caught between her hopes of returning home OR staying and being the HOPE of the Irish people.

Sarah has included some "book club worthy" questions at the end of the book!

An AMAZING story that will enthrall everyone who reads it!

Sarah M. Eden does it again!!
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Katie Macauley is no stranger to struggles and hardships, having been out on her own and working since the tender age of 8 has made Katie a strong and determined young Woman. The need for money to write some wrongs she feels she has made in her past finds Katie on her way from Boston to Hope Springs Wyoming. A small that that is divided between the Irish and the non Irish. Every person must choose a side. Every person that is except for Joseph Archer Katie's new employer, for he cannot choose sides. Because Katie is Irish he cannot keep her employed lest her cause more harm for her and the other Irish.
This a wonderful book kept me riveted until the last word. I highly recommend!!

A bonnie Irish-American romance
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Most of Sarah M. Eden’s books are of the Jane Austen, regency England type. She is quite good in her established genre, so when I saw that she was going to jump the pond (to America) in her new book, I wondered if she could pull it off.

She did! Eden’s Irish-American romance shines with all the witty dialogue long-time fans love, refreshingly infused with an Irish lilt and cadence. With over 400 pages, she has ample time to weave depth into her story with historical facts and insights into Irish-immigrant challenges of the time. Her characters are also believable and lovable.

While I personally would have liked to wonder a little more over which man our bonnie lass would end up with, there are plenty of other tensions and sub-plots to keep the story moving along. Eden resolves enough of the story to give us readers a satisfying ending, yet leaves plenty of loose ends to make me look forward to the sequel coming in the spring.

I couldn't put this book down....
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

This was one of Sarah M. Eden's best works. I found that it immediately caught me up in the story and just delighted in the characters. In the 1860's in Wyoming, Katie finds a place where her hope is to get past the trials of her life and find fulfillment in trying to earn her way back to Ireland. She finds a town divided by hatred and prejudice towards her and its Irish immigrant citizens. Two men seek her attention and companionship, but she must choose one. You really start liking both. The book ends with many unanswered questions and I look forward to seeing how all this will come together. Hope Springs Wyoming is a place where the hope of many can be fulfilled.

Another great read from Sarah Eden
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I always look forward to another book by Sarah Eden and this one did not disappoint! She is great at creating characters that really draw you in and have you rooting for them. I was very conflicted about what Katie should do and which man she should choose! Guess I will have to be patient a little bit longer!

Historical fiction romance
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

I love Sarah Eden. Her books are interesting, enjoyable, and engaging. This particular book is written in Ms. Eden's style but has a different feel to it than her other novels. The setting in Wyoming near the turn of the century was a fun change from the regency era settings of her other books. I enjoyed looking at life in the American West through the eyes of the Irish. I have to admit, apparently I was cheering for the wrong man throughout the book. I'm excited to read the sequel due out next year to continue the story of Katie and the two young men vying for her heart! I recommend this book to anyone looking for a clean historical romance.

Sarah Eden's best book yet!
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

A heart warming and personal look into the lives of early settlers with a "proper romance" twist. Loved the characters and a heart-wrenching look at how difficult it was for early pioneers to come to America. I'd recommend this book to anyone, LOVED IT!!!

Wow! What a story.
By , Submitted on 2015-02-25

Sarah Eden has created a story as varied, complex, confusing, joyful, and full of trials and accomplishments as life itself. 

It's full of characters that are so endearing. There's Granny, Tavish, Joseph, Biddy, and especially Katie. What a complex bundle Katie is! Sarah Eden masterfully shows the levels and facets within a person as they struggle with the choices in life that they make and with a past to overcome. Each character is fully developed with humor and spunk and, for the most part, joie de vivre. Some of them have to find that joy within. But, they eventually do. They are characters not to be missed. It's stories like this that make me mourn the fact that I don't have a single drop of Irish blood in me. 

With all the struggles of this story about Irish and non-Irish the central pulling point for me was the development of the relationships between Katie and Tavish and Katie and Joseph. Both men are such good people. When Katie is with Tavish I think he's the right one. But, when Katie is with Joseph I think he's the right one. What a conundrum!

That brings me to something else that I really like about this book. Sarah Eden doesn't give you the easy answers. She makes you strive and struggle along with the characters to come to an understanding. I found myself looking within to weigh the decisions that Katie had to make to determine what I would do in her situation. 

As the story ends, some answers have come. But other questions still remain. The good thing is that a sequel is coming next spring! That is a sequel I will definitely be reading. 

About the Author

Sarah M. Eden

SARAH M. EDEN read her first Jane Austen novel in elementary school and has been an Austen addict ever since. Fascinated by the English Regency era, Eden became a regular in that section of the reference department at her local library, where she painstakingly researched this extraordinary chapter in history. Eden is an award-winning author of short stories and was a Whitney Award finalist for her novels Seeking Persephone and Courting Miss Lancaster. Visit her at www.sarahmeden.com.

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