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4.3 out of 5 stars41
4.3 out of 5 stars
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on 29 May 2015
I have just bought this book for my twenty one year old son who has just finished Mila 18 my favourite read of all time and now his. A very difficult book to follow but this comes close. I first read this when I was seventeen, a year after it was first published and it had an enormous effect on me. For the first time I understood that the "Irish problem" was not just about a group of fanatics committing wanton atrocities on the innocent, it was as much about the centuries old Irish tragedy, about the innocent majority abused by the privileged few, a total over simplification of a terrible reality I know, but it is because Leon Uris' has a unique ability to draw characters in a multi dimensional way, that I was able to put aside the shocking and continuing current news events of the latest, appalling IRA bombings and so be able to gain some understanding of where this horror was born from, something most people in my experience then and now still have little knowledge of.
By relating to and caring deeply about the people who populate this novel, I was able to put aside my anger and prejudice, born purely out of lack of education on the subject and accept the responsibility, that the actions of the past were shaping an all too awful present. When you are able to put yourself in the other mans skin and look through his eyes the view is a revalation. This for me is Uris' greatest gift, because I care so deeply for his people, my hunger for education on the underlying topic has to be fed and for this I remain eternally grateful, but for some of his books I may have remained blind and ignorant about so much and in consequence so would my sons. When an author challenges you to reevaluate your beliefs, I think that is the ultimate achievement. Read this book, for me it is one of a few that I have been privileged enough to hold, and have happily accepted it's invitation to open and broaden my mind, which subsequently allowed me to make informed choices and altered my perceptions of life and people profoundly. I look forward eagerly to my son's opinion.
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on 17 April 2002
This is a must read book for students of Irish history, or for those who enjoy a good, pacey yarn. It’s well researched, written in an easy to read, straightforward style and while it gives a biased view of Irish politics, you can perhaps begin to understand why the Irish nationalists are the way they are. Don’t be put off by the politics though. Uris explores the characters and shows all their strengths and weaknesses and you are swept along with their exploits and loves. A smashing read, hugely enjoyable, exciting, sad, funny – yeah, it’s probably got just about everything.
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on 10 November 2014
A powerful story set in the mid 19th century, following the lives of three families, all affected by their Irish lives.LU has woven a strong novel, intertwined with Irish history and injustice. You cannot help but be moved by the tragedy that was the plight of the Irish peasant under the yoke of what was effectively British tyranny. LU does not set out to correct injustices, nor is this an attempt at anti British prpaganda, it is a powerful story of a time past and some of the strong characters that circumstances threw up.There are strong characters emerging from this book, whom you will love or hate in equal measure, but it's a story that will touch the heart.

LU does have the occasional habit of " rabbiting on " a wee bit at times, but you will quickly learn to speed read over these parts, but overall " trinity " is a powerful and moving story ( yes it's long at nearly 900 pages, but it's a damn good story ) which is worthwhile reading
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on 21 September 2008
This book describes the interactions and feuds between Irish catholic farmers, the aristocracy and protestant workers from mid 19th century up to the start of the First World War. With rebellion brewing, the interactions are laced with poison, with all parties protecting and furthering their own interests.

The poignant moments of family crisis (births, deaths and marriages) are superbly portrayed, and there is energy in the build-up to key events, which almost compels but just falls short.

This is a well-written book, that describes background and history in great detail to back up the story. But it fails to build on the beginnings. The book builds a compelling plot to a point, but the conclusion moves into short summaries that are almost notes of the planned ending, compared to the previous prose.

Some years later, Leon Uris wrote Redemption as a sequel to this novel. With better use of time-shifting, Redemption is a better telling of both its own story and this one.
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on 23 November 2009
I have always been fascinated by the history of Ireland and this book, whilst written about three fictitious families, accurately captures the absolute tradgedy of the Emerald Isle from the famine of the 1840's to the Easter Rising of 1916.

The author captivates his readers with his undoubted knowledge of the sensitive subject matter and his ability to passionately describe the harsh realities of life as an native Irish person.

Personally, I think this book is a must read for all those who have wondered why Ireland has endured such tragic troubles for so long.

For many, the book will be revelationary and undoubtedly contribute to a more informed perspective of the barbarism associated with the island.

The book is incredibly well written and Leon Uris has surpassed himself in constructing this masterpiece, for which I highly commend and applaud him.

Just read it!
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on 12 February 2012
a great book which if you have any irish / catholic in you this is not to be missed. this is my second time of reading this book and it is as tho' you are living the life of the main man conor larkin. a lot of reading but well worth it
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on 6 February 2014
A fantastic book about Irish history. A big book but lots of content
which is a fictional story but with accurate facts all around it.
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on 19 December 2012
I love this book, from the very start until the end it keeps you captivated and I would highly recommend it to my friends and family
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This is one of those books that you feel like you should approve: it tells the sad story of Ireland with many interesting historical details. If you want to understand the IRA, the bombings in GB and Belfast, and the current difficulties of negotiating disarmament, this is a good place to start.

However, unfortunately, the characters are overblown to the point of becoming positively silly - this is history as soap opera. At the center, you have Conor: not only is he a stunningly handsome and totally dedicated revolutionary, but he is a poet as well as blacksmith of genius. He falls for a protestant (forbidden!), then a fellow catholic, while attracting a chief protagonist rich woman admirer whom he uses. Then there are the evil British aristocrats, etc etc. (One of them is jealous of his wife's obsession with her father, yet doesn't bring it up for over 30 years and instead tries to destroy her covertly, all because she called to her father while giving birth and not to him. Whew!) This greatly detracts from the quality of the reading experience and simply isn't believable after a while. There just isn't any subtlety in it.

Nonetheless, there are moving parts of the story, and I learned a lot of history - or at least was provoked. REcommended with these caveats in mind.
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on 24 January 2003
Like the other reviewers, I really enjoyed this book. It's a "ripping yarn" from start to finish, and a great way of explaining some of the main events in Ireland's recent history. Excellent for a new student to Irish history. However, do be cautious and aware of some bias in the tale that Uris tells. If you do know anything about Irish history of the 1600s to 1900s, you'll know it's possible to have many interpretations of the same events. For me, Uris over-emphasises the republican side of these issues. To be really frank, and over-general, he paints catholics (and/or republicans) as strong and honest, but downtrodden, while his protesants (or loyalists) -- and his British characters -- are manipulative, greedy and abusive. For every slant Uris uses, there is (at least) one other side of the story. So, please, read this as a great tale set in Ireland, but certainly not a definitive history lesson. If you want to know about Irish history, please, please read a more complete and unbiased text -- don't rely on Leon Uris.
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