Trinity by Leon Uris
Going into this book, I knew only the basics surrounding the Protestant/Catholic struggle in Ireland in the late 1800s and early 1900s, so at times I found myself a bit confused even though Uris explains the most important historical moments of this time. Mainly, it was a difficult time caused by ignorance and hatred due to religious fervor. However, I found myself quickly swept up in the history of Ireland during this time and the fictional families it follows over a few decades.
Due to this turbulent history, this novel was often difficult to read as it seems there was little hope for real progress and equality even over the course of several decades and three generations. There were also some pretty horrifying scenes due to poor work conditions, violent protests, and families split between sympathizers and the devout that although fictional did cast a light on the terrible things that really did occur during this time. Besides reading about these harsh truths, there were some difficult chapters to get through as these passages read more like a history textbook than a novel.
Even though there were some moments in the novel that seemed a bit too long, the majority of the book was exciting and page-turning. Uris beautifully interweaves these fictional families’ lives into the history which made it all the more interesting and compelling, and I learned quite a lot that I hadn’t already known.
Synopsis: a sweeping and powerful epic adventure that captures the “terrible beauty" of Ireland during its long and bloody struggle for freedom. It is the electrifying story of an idealistic young Catholic rebel and the valiant and beautiful Protestant girl who defied her heritage to join his cause. It is a tale of love and danger, of triumph at an unthinkable cost—a magnificent portrait of a people divided by class, faith, and prejudice—an unforgettable saga of the fires that devastated a majestic land... and the unquenchable flames that burn in the human heart.