• XX Chromosomes

The Girl Who Came Home by Hazel Gaynor

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Recommendation: 3/5

Inspired by true events surrounding a group of Irish emigrants who sailed on the maiden voyage of R.M.S Titanic.

Gaynor undoubtedly gallant and audacious taking on profound subject matter of the Titanic for her debut novel. She did a wonderful job and her graciousness apparent throughout the novel.

I was very fond of the story. I enjoyed her pictorial writing and her extensive research. She excelled in the depiction of the characters. The anguish was clearly felt of the family and friends left behind as they attempt to decipher the fate of their loved ones aboard the perished vessel. The thought of having to check a list of the lives lost, seeing if your beloved’s name is listed is pure torture. As the ship is making its slow decent into the icy inky ocean depths the scene is horrifying. The reader is able to sense the terror, panic and agony of the passengers and crew, their waves of fear halting.

The twists added to the emotional spell of narrative and of Maggie. Having Maggie find peace softened the story, minimizing the punctuation of its somberness slightly. Story was well done, wonderful first effort by Gaynor.

Grace Butler could have been erased and her absence would not have impacted the integrity or depth of the narrative. She really didn’t add or take away from the story, her presence was neutral.

A story with a message of love, survival, loss and pain, most of all discovering peace.

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