Sunday, December 21, 2014

Fingal O'Reilly, Irish Doctor by Patrick Taylor

While we've come to know and love Dr. Fingal Flahertie O'Reilly as the senior doctor in a tiny Irish town, new doings have stirred things up in his life - including his memories of the past. Interspersed with the "modern" timeline (1960's actually) are his reminiscences of beginning his career out of medical school (in the 1930s).

Almost unbelievably, this is the eighth book in the Irish County series, and I'm still captivated and engrossed in the lives of the residents of Ballybucklebo. I've made it my habit to wait for these on audiobook, because narrator John Keating is a true gem: He seamlessly breaths life into men, women and children from all parts of the British, Scottish, and Irish lands.

These books are touching, but also funny. In this one there's a bit of grandstanding about political unrest and world events, but I have to admit that I've also found it enlightening in ways I wouldn't have expected. Young Fingal's work in the slums of Belfast allow some historical insight into a world I'd heard about but never actually studied. In the newer storyline, there's a new female doctor working with Fingal and her presence stirs up bias and prejudice it's easy to forget our foremothers endured.

I was again glad to visit the good doctors and hilarious characters in this small town, and can't wait to visit again!

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