About the Book: Driven by a shameful past and a perilous future, Maureen O'Reilly and her sister flee Ireland in search of safety, liberty, and opportunity. But after surviving the rigors of Ellis Island, Maureen leans that their benefactor has died, and his family-refusing to own his debt-casts her our. Impoverished and in danger of deportation, Maureen connives to find employment in a prominent Manhattan department stor, only to discover the elegant facade hids a dangerous secret. Despite her family's disapproval, Olivia Wakefield vows to honor her father's promise but can't find Maureen, the woman her brother-in-law so rudely turned away. Unexpected help comes from a local businessman, who Olivia dares hope will become more than an ally, even as she fears the secrets he's hiding. As women begin disappearing from the department store, Olivia rallies influential ladies in her circle to help Maureen stand against injustice and fight for the lives of their growing band of sisters. But will they be too late? And in the midst of a world gone mad, can either woman open her heart to divine leading or the love it might bring?
About the Author: Cathy Gohlke is a two-time Christy Award-winning author of Promise Me This, William Henry Is A Fine Name, and I Have Seen Hime In The Watchfires. She lives with her husband on the banks of the Laurel Run in elkton, Maryland. Cathy has worked as a school librarian, drama director, and director of children’s and education ministries. When not traipsing the hills and dales of historic sites, she, her husband, and their dog, Reilly, make their home on the banks of the Laurel Run in Maryland.Visit her online at www.cathygohlke.com.
My Thoughts On the Book: When Band of Sisters arrived in the mail I put it in the read later pile because I wasn't sure that I was going to like the book. When I flipped through the beginning of the book it looked like a long, drawn out book. One that I would be glad to finish. I was so wrong. Band of Sisters was challenging and moving. Gohlke's characters felt like real people. As a reader you feel attached to them. I was glued to book from the moment I finished page one. The historical detail she uses is amazing. Having been to Ellis Island and feeling the ghosts of those who had passed through there many years ago this book presents the early 20th century from the viewpoint of early 20th century immigrants mixed with those of high society as they two meet face to face. Olivia Wakefield, one of the main characters, is a part of a women's circle and from high society. This group of women, after reading the book, "In His Steps," challenge each other to ask themselves in every situation, "What would Jesus do?" This band of sisters takes the challenge to the next level and begin working to make life easier for lone women who come into America looking for a new life. Maureen O'Reilly is the other power female character who is from the other side of the tracks. She is the Irish immigrant who come to America with her sister, Katie Rose, to find a better life for the two of them only to be involved in human trafficking. The book leaves the reader frustrated in the end because there is a lack of justice for all the evil that occurs in the novel. It is definitely not just a "happily ever after" novel. The sad thing about the ending is that it really does not end....human trafficking is still with us even today. Maybe we should all ask ourselves, "What would Jesus do?" Maybe I should ask myself too.
Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Tyndal House Publishers as part of their Blog Tour program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
All I can say is,"Thanks!"
I am a woman who wears many hats and loves them all. I am a singer - I sing with the group Still Magnolias. I was part of the original First United Methodist Church Arbor Praise Team until we moved. After 24+ years of teaching English 11 and Spanish I - II at Benjamin Russell High School I decided to take a job closer to home. I now teach Spanish I & 2 at Randolph Co. High School and Wadley. I thought I was getting close to retirement and looking forward to it, but decided to move my cheese and try something different. I am a preacher's wife and a preacher myself. My husband Frank is the pastor at Rock Mills United Methodist Church and I am the pastor at Midway (Wedowee). It has made our conversations interesting, to say the least.