Avon, Nov 2001, 6.99, 384 pp.
In 1860, her mom died from the wasting disease two weeks ago in Limerick and now twelve years old Mary Margaret Quinn knows her world is over even as she is presently in Baltimore. However, a guardian angel arrives in the form of Father Hugh Fitzhugh, who gently takes the lass with him so she can live at St. Columbia's orphanage. Hugh promises to teach Mary how to play the harp if she provides him lessons on her fiddle.
Fourteen years later, Maggie still lives in the orphanage, but now helps with the children. She especially feels an affinity to a frightened Clare. Civil War veteran Gordon Kincaid arrives at the orphanage looking for his lost daughter. He only recently learned that he had a child. The girl turns out to be Clare, who he wants to bring home with him. He pleads with Maggie to accompany them because she is the only person to connect with Clare. She agrees and soon Maggie's compassion reaches inside Gordon, who once disavowed love, but now struggles to tell her all that he feels for her.
Using a powerfully vivid backdrop of the Reconstruction Era, THE NIGHTINGALE'S SONG is a wonderful historical romance starring three incredibly developed individuals who each steal apart of the reader's heart. The story line sings as the audience finds they want this couple to make it and for Clare to obtain happiness. Because the cast is so human, sub-genre fans will want to see Clare's tale told too from Kathleen Eschenburg.
This report prepared by Harriet Klausner