Daily Review: The Rosewood Whistle by Pat McDermott
January 23, 2019
He knows he can’t dream of spending the rest of his life with her while the ghosts of their partners still haunt them.
Surrounded by Ireland’s music and myths, a widowed American writer meets a tour guide leery of love…
On her own at the end of a long and difficult marriage, Gemma Pentrandolfo still hears the critical voice of her husband taunting her from his grave. To foster her independence, she schedules a summer vacation in County Mayo intending to write her first book, and she’s counting on Ireland for inspiration.
An idea presents itself when she tours Achill Island with a silver-tongued tour guide whose good looks prompt her to write more than her high-minded novel: she transcribes her years of longing in a steamy fantasy no one is meant to see.
Years have passed since an accident claimed the self-absorbed wife who scorned Ben Connigan and his music. Since then, the former tin whistle ace has avoided marriage, though he never lacked for female companionship before he traded his high-tech career for the slow-paced life of a hometown tour guide.
Ben has accepted the end of his run of discreet affairs until he takes Gemma touring. Her passion for Ireland impresses him. Her love of Irish music soon compels him to dust off his whistles. Knowing she’ll leave at the end of the summer, he sees no harm in keeping her company—until he dares to dream of spending the rest of his life with her.
But he knows it can’t be, not while the ghosts of their partners still haunt them. Not unless the music and myths of Ireland can help them find their way…
Gemma is an American who’s come to county Mayo for the summer to work on a book. Her children are grown and her husband died about three years earlier, though Gemma had a difficult marriage so his loss is a mixed bag. She meets tour guide Ben Connigan, also a widower though his wife passed many years ago.
Ben is handsome and funny, so Gemma wonders if this is an opportunity to explore dating.
This is a sweet story of middle-aged romance. Ms. McDermott does a wonderful job of describing the west coast of Ireland, and her dialogue is perfect. She’s obviously well-versed in the dialect and idioms of the Irish, and it is a delight to read.
The title comes from the whistles that Ben plays. This book is full of Irish music; each chapter is titled with a different song. As a lover of Irish music, I really enjoyed this part of the book also.
A quick read and a nice romance.
By Time Traveler
I really enjoyed reading Rosewood Whistle. This was such a wonderful story and was a refreshing change from Medieval romances I normally read. It was set in modern day Ireland and the characters were delightful. Both the hero and heroine were older than the customary ages that are usually part of these stories.
Both had been through marriages that ended in widowhood, but the baggage that was dragged along had less to do with the passing of their respective mates and more to do with the dysfunction they had brought to their partners while they were alive. Both had to overcome long-standing hurts and heartache. I loved that the characters had substance that comes with the experience of life.
The supporting characters offered charm, wisdom, and wit. One of my favorite descriptions was when the heroine’s daughter waved at the hero and she was described as waving with a curly fingered wave. I loved that. How many times, have I waved like that? I know that is a silly thing to pick up, but it was descriptions like that which caused me to relate more to each character. I also felt myself transported to the lush landscapes of the Isle of Erin.
I really connected to these believable characters and found myself thinking about them for the duration of the book until I could finish it. I thoroughly enjoyed the musical aspect of the story and it was obvious to me that not only did the author do her research on the traditional music of the Irish people, but she also had an actual love for the music itself.
I am looking forward to reading the next book, which I have already downloaded, by Pat McDermott. Loved the characters, including the lesser ones, and loved the story.
Please click HERE to find The Rosewood Whistle on Amazon.