Review: BAND OF SISTERS / by Cathy Gohlke

Band of Sisters, / by Cathy Gohlke
Tyndale House     ISBN     9781414353081
Adult     Rating:     4

Award-winning author Cathy Gohlke pens a gripping story of two Irish sisters who immigrated to America, only to find the land of dreams is also filled with nightmares.

In Band of Sisters, Maureen O’Reilly and her younger sister Katie Rose escape a dangerous situation in Ireland after the death of their father. Years earlier, Civil War Colonel Wakefield owed a debt of honor to their father, giving the girls the courage to flee to America. Katie Rose is quarantined shortly after their arrival at Ellis Island – and that is only the start of their challenges. When Maureen arrives, his family refuses to help them.

Meanwhile, the colonel’s daughter Olivia wants to honor her father’s debt. A local businessman befriends her and supports her decision. Alone and needing employment, Maureen manages to get a position at a department store, unaware that a dangerous secret is being kept. When women start disappearing from the store, Olivia and Maureen work together to uncover the nefarious plot, only to discover that people close to them are involved.

Gohlke is well-known for her historical detail and willingness to tackle tough issues, in this case, the plight of immigrant women facing a circle of poverty they can barely escape. Band of Sisters takes place in New York around 1910, when women worked as factory workers with no benefits, and unscrupulous men took advantage of them. White slavery (or human trafficking) was just as much a part of that time as it is today. To break out of the cycle of poverty, women need to be healed of the past, as well as have time to readjust to society again.

Carol R. Gehringer

Disclaimer: Book reviews are my honest opinion of books I either purchased or received free of cost from the publishers, publicists, and/or authors. I am not required to write reviews, nor to even post positive reviews.