Llywelyn, Morgan. 1949; a novel of the Irish free state.

Author:Hart, Ann
Position:Book Review
 
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LLYWELYN, Morgan. 1949; a novel of the Irish free state. Tot, Forge. 485p. notes. bibliog, c2003. 0-812-57080-4. $7.99. SA

This novel follows 1916 and 1921 and continues the story of the Halloran and Mooney families with Ned Halloran's daughter, Ursula, as the protagonist. The story opens in 1925 with Ursula, approximately 15, being sent off to a finishing school in Switzerland, paid for by Ella Mooney and against her father's wishes. After two years she returns to Ireland to take a position in the fledgling broadcasting industry in Dublin. She is a feminist who wants to have a career and remain in the limelight in an Ireland where Catholic conservatism is taking hold and restricting women to traditional roles. She refuses more than superficial involvement with men until she meets an English correspondent named Lewis Baines. Unknown to him, she bears his child in Switzerland while working for the Irish representative to the League of Nations. When the war in Europe necessitates a return to Ireland, Ursula inherits the family farm, which provides her with a home and income in her state of disgrace as an unwed mother. Needless to say, the farm enjoys a revival and is superbly successful under Ursula's capable supervision and ambitious plans for improvement. The novel ends with the...

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