irishdestiny

Guilt-ridden, Irish barrister, Ian O'Farrell, wants to regain his honor and his father's respect - two things stolen from Ian when he failed to protect his younger brother from treachery. To do that, he sets aside his goal of fighting for Irish interests in the courts of London and travels to Boston to find the man responsible for his brother's death. There, he meets Brianna Cavanaugh, and suddenly a chance for a fulfilling future jeopardizes his mission and the redemption of his father's favor.

Brianna Cavanaugh arrived in America, nursing heartache after the brutal slaying of her fiancé. Now in Boston, a town leagues away from the violence and anguish she left behind in London, she only wants to put the past behind her. Then, Ian O'Farrell walks into the church soup kitchen, turning her peaceful life upside down as she fights to hold her emotions in check or risk being burned again by love.

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reviews
4-1/2 stars from The Romance Studio - I loved the way Ms. Dalton presented this tale and highly recommend it to all, but the lovers of historical romance will be thrilled! This book will become one to keep on our personal bookshelves. Brenda Talley

4 Books from The Long and The Short of It - Irish Destiny is a tale filled with rollicking intrigue, political plots, and a fiery romance….. This book provides a nice journey into a forgotten time and place. It contains both strong characters and an involving plot, and it is drawn richly enough to hold the reader’s interest and let her wander the streets of long ago Boston. Sunflower

3 Stars from Romantic Times - Dalton's Victorian romance has revenge, intrigue, love and a dark, sensual hero and a heroine in a quandary. This tale is compelling. Faith V. Smith

4 Roses from Romance Readers At Heart - IRISH DESTINY by Donna Dalton is a well written, interesting tale...I believe this is an engaging story, and I enjoyed reading it. Kay James

4 Angels from Fallen Angels Review - Irish Destiny by Donna Dalton is well written and interesting. I like the way her characters are fully developed...With an intricate plot and loads of Irish charm, it pulled me in from the very first page! Marlene

Reader Comment - LOVED it. You had me hooked in the first couple of pages. Most definitely a keeper and something I'll re-read in the future. Larriane Wills, author of Romance, Sci-fi and Fantasy

excerpt

Boston, 1871

A hellhound had invaded the charity hall.

How else could she describe the black-clad figure navigating the shadows of the crowded chamber? Dark and ominous, he drifted closer, his overcoat billowing around him like the sails of a ghost ship.

From behind the soup kettle, Brianna Cavanaugh studied the approaching stranger. Gaslight burnished his features in a golden glow as he moved out of the gloom. Ebony hair of an unfashionable length curled below his ears, just brushing his collar. His well-tanned, angular face was punctuated by an aquiline nose that
sloped to firm lips which, as he drew near, thinned into whipcord tautness.

It was a handsome face, and one that might pervade a young girl’s fanciful dreams. The kind of dreams Brianna left behind years ago.

Hawk-like, the stranger scoured the vaulted chamber from table to table, assessing and dismissing each rag-clad immigrant in a brief glance. His dark gaze latched onto her, and five ground-eating strides later, he stood in front of her.

Brianna pressed her lips into a smile and nodded at the soup kettle. “Sir, would you care for some--”

“I’m not here for food." His deep voice carried the hint of an Irish lilt.

“Ah, is that a bit of Dublin I hear?” she asked. “Or perhaps further south, County Kildare?”

He said nothing, merely regarded her with those intense ebony eyes.

Her pulse quickening, she glanced past him at the crowded tables. “The Finnegans are newly arrived from Kildare. They’re supping over there-”

“As I said before, I’m not here for food,” he interrupted, his tone low and direct. “I’m looking for someone, a man, and that fellow--” He gestured at an elderly man near the door. “Suggested you could help me.”

“Who is it you seek?”

“Rory Lynch," he replied. His voice thinned; his shoulders stiffened ever so slightly. "He came to Boston nearly a year ago.” He took a step forward, his thighs brushing the edge of the table as he bent toward her. “Do you know of him?"

The hairs on the back of her neck prickled. She dropped the ladle and her smile and stepped away.

He frowned and leaned back, a tiny sigh escaping his lips as he moved. “Please forgive me. I did not intend to alarm you.”

She released the breath caught in her throat. Best to remain calm until she knew more about the stranger's intentions. "May I ask why you seek this man?"

"'Tis family business," he stated.

"Are you of the Lynch family then? What is your name?"

"No, I am not. And my name is not important."

Not important? Now she knew something was amiss.

His jaw muscle twitched beneath tanned skin, evidence of a growing frustration. "I ask again," he persisted. "Do you know of Rory Lynch?"

She ran her tongue across dry lips before trusting herself to speak. "I'm sorry. I'm not familiar with anyone by that name." She prayed she sounded convincing. She hated to lie, but consoled herself with the thought that it was in Rory's best interest. Was lying for a good cause considered a sin?

Dark eyes probed her face as though attempting to uncover her deception. Warmth rose into her cheeks, and her palms grew moist. She darted a glance at the entry. Rory occasionally stopped by the Hall to visit her.

Please God, don't let today be one of those days.

"Are you sure you don't know Lynch," he asked, raising a skeptical eyebrow. "I was assured he is a member of this parish and assists the Charitable Irish Society at this soup kitchen."

Sweet Mary. “It is a large parish, sir.” She swiped sweat-slicked hands on her apron and eased around the table, causing the man to turn his back toward the side entrance.

The door Rory was most likely to use.

“It would be difficult to know everyone,” she continued. “Perhaps this gentleman...Lynch, did you say...is a parishioner but...” She gave a tiny shrug.

“He’s slender, with red hair and a ruddy complexion. Dresses like a dandy. Quite unmistakable.”

At the far end of the hall, a door opened. Several men, all acquaintances of Rory, wandered in. Her heart began to pound.

“Miss?” Eyes black as a moonless night bored into her.

She swallowed and reached to tidy a stack of bowls in the hope of covering the deceit and fear that must surely show on her face. “I don’t recall seeing such a man.” At least, not recently.

“Never? You’re positive?”

The outer doors swung closed as the last of the men entered the charity hall. None were Rory. Her pulse slowed. Her confidence rose.

She leaned away from the stranger’s stare and gestured with a nod at the chamber. “As you can see, The Hall is filled with dozens of men, most of them clothed in mere rags.” She let her eyes travel over him. “Certainly I would recall a finely dressed man, if one came in, don’t you think?”

The dark visitor studied her for a moment. “Yes. I understand,” he said, his gaze drifting over her. “Much like one remembers a beautiful woman.” He held her gaze an instant longer, then turned away, surveying the room, saying something about the size of the crowd.

But Brianna wasn’t hearing his words. His tone had changed. It was richer, deeper than before, the lilt more evident. It slipped over her, soft and smooth as a caress. Warmth rippled down her spine in shockingly pleasurable waves.

Only one voice had ever stirred such feelings in her, and that voice – those feelings - had been silenced many years ago.

“Well,” he said, startling her back to the present. “I see that you cannot help me.” He squared his shoulders and gave a curt nod. “Good evening, miss. Thank you for your time.”

With a swish of his coat, he spun around and headed for the entry. Men and women scattered before him as he sailed past the tables. At the doorway, he hesitated, his broad shoulders blocking out what little daylight remained. Then, with a jerk, he left, slamming the door behind him and blowing out of her life as
quickly as he’d stormed in.

She released her breath in a long, slow exhale. What could that man want with Rory?

Nothing good. She was sure of it.

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