This author participates in the Readers' Favorite Free Book Program, which is open to all readers and is completely free. The author will provide you with a free copy of their book in exchange for an honest review. You and the author will discuss what sites you will post your review to and what kind of copy of the book you would like to receive (eBook, PDF, Word, paperback, etc.). To begin, click the purple email icon to send this author a private email.
Reviewed by Michelle Stanley for Readers' Favorite
Two Journeys Home is a historical fiction story by Kevin O’Connell. In 1767, widowed Eileen O’Connell returns to Derrynane, Ireland after spending over five years in Austria. She acquired European traits and customs considered presumptuous by a few relatives and locals. Eileen meets Lieutenant O’Leary while shopping and their attraction is so strong that they decide to marry. Family members disapprove, and give her an unreasonable ultimatum resulting in a scandal. Eileen, who was forced to marry her late husband, flees to Austria with O’Leary. Although happily married and working as a nanny to Archduchess Marie Antoine, Eileen dreams of returning to Ireland. She feels she’ll lead a more contented life there than in the royal Austrian court, but her family’s ultimatum could pose a problem.
If you want to know how the Irish played an integral part in the Irish Brigade of the French Army, as well as the Austrian Army, Two Journeys Home is a book I recommend. Although the story focuses on Eileen, who happens to be strong-willed, playful, caring and dedicated to her duties, it’s not entirely about romance. Kevin O’Connell made history come alive with his in-depth information about life in eighteenth-century Europe, the divisions and ranks of French and Austrian armies, and why Irishmen were considered valuable soldiers who helped strengthen these forces. I was introduced to the hierarchy of the court and understood why Eileen felt respected among her peers, yet inferior at times. Two Journeys Home is a fantastic book by Kevin O’Connell. He also made me want to tour Ireland while reading his description of the country.