Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Pub Across The Pond-Mary Carter

The Pub Across The Pond
Mary Carter
Kensington, Sep 27 2011, $15.00
ISBN: 9780758253361

In Ballybeog, Ireland Ronan McBride, his six sisters known as the half dozen and his widowed mom own Uncle Jimmy’s. Next door to their pub is their Uncle Joe’s market. During a poker game, Joe tosses in his store while Ronan does likewise with the pub. The players agree to a fall back position for the loser to buy back their establishment. Though he has four of a kind, Ronan loses the pub to Joe’s royal flush. Ronan informs the ladies he lost the pub. The Half Dozen host a raffle in America with the winner owning the pub. In Ohio, Carlene Rivers wins the raffle. She leaves her agoraphobic father and the fight gym he owns for Ireland.

Ronen meets Carlene at Galway, but takes her to the racetrack instead of the pub as he says she is lucky. She wins the first race but loses the rest. Everyone welcomes the “Fecking Yank” with a party. She gets drunk and Ronan takes her to bed. Joe offers to buy the pub but Carlene says no. Though attracted to Ronan, Carlene assumes he is fickle. Meanwhile someone wants the Yankee Doodle Dandy to go home and with Ronan’s rejection as wells as the townsfolk divided about her, she thinks it is time to return to Ohio.

Mindful of a cross between Irish Jam and Leap Year. the American in Ireland is a strong character who keeps the story line focused. The secondary cast, almost all Irish, immensely enhance the story line. Putting aside the poker hands, this is a warm contemporary as Ronen meets his match in the Feckin Yank but may fail to recognize how he feels before she re-crosses the Great Pond.

Harriet Klausner

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