In the bitter winter of 1847, from an Ireland torn by injustice and natural disaster, the Star of the Sea
sets sail for New York. On board are hundreds of fleeing refugees, some brimming with optimism, many more desperate. Among them are a maidservant with a devastating secret, bankrupt Lord Merridith and his wife and children, an aspiring novelist, and a maker of revolutionary ballads, all braving the Atlantic in search of a new home. Each is connected more deeply than they can possibly know. But a camouflaged killer is stalking the decks, hungry for the vengeance that will bring absolution. The 26-day journey will see many lives end, others begin afresh. Passionate loves are tenderly recalled, ducked responsibilities regretted too late; profound relationships shockingly unearthed where once it seemed there were none.
In a spellbinding story of tragedy and mercy, love and healing, the further the ship sails towards the Promised Land, the more her passengers seem moored to a past which will never let them go. A novel as urgently contemporary in its preoccupations as it is historically revealing, this gripping and compassionate tale builds with the pace of a thriller to an unforgettable conclusion.
©2004 Joseph O'Connor; (P)2004 Random House Audiobooks