Title: The Connellys of County Down
Author: Tracey Lange
Publisher: Celadon Books
Release Date: August 1, 2023
When Tara Connelly is released from prison after serving eighteen months on a drug charge, she knows rebuilding her life at thirty years old won’t be easy. With no money and no prospects, she returns home to live with her siblings, who are both busy with their own problems. Her brother, a single dad, struggles with the ongoing effects of a brain injury he sustained years ago, and her sister’s fragile facade of calm and order is cracking under the burden of big secrets. Life becomes even more complicated when the cop who put her in prison keeps showing up unannounced, leaving Tara to wonder what he wants from her now.
While she works to build a new career and hold her family together, Tara finds a chance at love in a most unlikely place. But when the Connellys’ secrets start to unravel and threaten her future, they all must face their worst fears and come clean, or risk losing each other forever.
The Connellys of County Down is a moving novel about testing the bounds of love and loyalty. It explores the possibility of beginning our lives anew, and reveals the pitfalls of shielding each other from the bitter truth.
Great sophomore novel!
The Connellys of County Down follows 3 siblings.
Tara Connelly: Tara has been serving time in prison for the last eighteen months for trafficking drugs. Tara was an art teacher but she won't be able to return to her job. She will need to start her life all over again. Without a place to call her own and without money, she will need to stay at their childhood home with her other 2 siblings and her nephew.
When her sister, Geraldine is not there to pick her up, she is offered a ride home by Brian Nolan. Brian is one of the two cops who arrested her. Why is he there?
Eddie Connelly: He had a traumatic brain injury many years ago but he's still dealing with the sequela of his trauma. He gets debilitating headaches. Eddie has a son, Connor who lives with him after his mother left them.
Geraldine Connelly: She likes rules and tries to keep the house running. She feels responsible for her family. She is also very stressed at work and in reality, being overwhelmed is a better way to describe her.
I love the dynamics of the main characters brought to life by Tracey Lange. Despite being flawed characters, it was hard not to root for a good outcome for all of them. The Connellys had not been treated well by life and you wanted a win for them.
A complimentary copy was provided by Celadon Books via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.