Band of Sisters  -     By: Cathy Gohlke
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Band of Sisters

Tyndale House / 2012 / Paperback

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Product Description

Maureen O'Reilly and her younger sister flee Ireland in hope of claiming the life promised to their father over twenty years before. After surviving the rigors of Ellis Island, Maureen learns that their benefactor, Colonel Wakefield, has died. His family, refusing to own his Civil War debt, casts her out. Alone, impoverished, and in danger of deportation, Maureen connives to obtain employment in a prominent department store. But she soon discovers that the elegant facade hides a secret that threatens every vulnerable woman in the city.

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 400
Vendor: Tyndale House
Publication Date: 2012
Dimensions: 8.25 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 1414353081
ISBN-13: 9781414353081
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

Maureen O’Reilly and her younger sister flee Ireland in hope of claiming the life promised to their father over twenty years before. After surviving the rigors of Ellis Island, Maureen learns that their benefactor, Colonel Wakefield, has died. His family, refusing to own his Civil War debt, casts her out. Alone, impoverished, and in danger of deportation, Maureen connives to obtain employment in a prominent department store. But she soon discovers that the elegant facade hides a secret that threatens every vulnerable woman in the city.

Despite her family’s disapproval, Olivia Wakefield determines to honor her father’s debt but can’t find Maureen. Unexpected help comes from a local businessman, whom Olivia begins to see as more than an ally, even as she fears the secrets he’s hiding. As women begin disappearing from the store, Olivia rallies influential ladies in her circle to help Maureen take a stand against injustice and fight for the lives of their growing band of sisters. But can either woman open her heart to divine leading or the love it might bring?

ChristianBookPreviews.com

Cathy Gohlke's Band of Sisters tells the story of Maureen O'Reilly and her sister. Fresh off the boat from Ireland, the two immigrate to America to claim the life their father was promised twenty years earlier. But when they find out their benefactor has died and his family has no intentions of fulfilling his promise, Maureen struggles to make her way. Band of Sisters follows Maureen on her journey to establish herself in the land of opportunity that presents her with more than a few obstacles, and to rely on God while trusting that He loves her.


Gohlke tells a captivating story, presenting different characters in varying stages of their faith. Maureen isn't perfect. She is at a point many can relate to: trying to understand how a loving God could care about someone like her. She learns this and feels God's support as her story progresses.


Maureen eventually finds employment in a high-class department store after her rough start in America. But she soon discovers the store holds a dark secret that threatens the safety of women in the city. She finds support from an unexpected source, a band of sisters led by Olivia Wakefield, the daughter of her would-be benefactor. Together, they work against the injustices faced by immigrant women.


In Luke 2:10 an angel says, "Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all the people." Maureen struggles with this concept throughout the book, the idea of living without fear, of having joy. Maureen is a refreshing character to follow. She is not at a perfect place in her faith, and throughout the book we get to see her work through her doubts and reservations. She claims God's love as she grows closer and closer Him throughout her difficulties.

The novel gives a realistic portrayal of life for a new immigrant in America. As Maureen works hard to make her way in her new home, she learns to lean on God and to trust that he accepts her, no matter what. This book is recommended to women and teens who will likely feel some connection to the likeable, determined character of Maureen. - Caroline Riofredo, www.ChristianBookPreviews.com

Product Reviews

4.8 Stars Out Of 5
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Displaying items 1-5 of 30
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  1. ruthhill74
    Yelm, WA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Book With a Message
    December 23, 2013
    ruthhill74
    Yelm, WA
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    When I began this book, I honestly had no idea how prevalent the human sex trafficking business was and how long it had been going on. I was horrified to realize that such a thing as the white slavery trade was going on in this country in the late 1800's. I am still reeling from the shock of it all.

    The Christian message of this book was fantastically woven into the fabric of the story in a remarkable way. I so appreciate the way that Cathy Gohlke made God and Christianity a real thing rather than just something nice on the side. The characters who were truly committed to the Lord, lived it!

    The characters were so well-developed, and I connected with them on a real way. I always find it kind of funny when I actually feel like praying for the characters to make it through this situation or that situation when they are not real. But the author made the characters so alive to me that I wanted to do just that.

    I appreciate the way the author wrote fairly realistic fiction. Usually, Christian books avoid great tragedies and even mention the dreaded word "sex" or "prostitution." This book handled the issue in a real way, and it made the story all that more real to me.

    I was surprised to see the inclusion of the book "In His Steps." It had been a while since I had read that book, but it certainly made for an interesting turn of events. To see the characters living the philosophy "What Would Jesus Do" really did make me stop and think about the cost of following Christ--especially for those in society. This is a book I can recommend to anyone who wants to learn about a portion of history that is not normally discussed in this country.

    I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are 100 percent mine, and I was not financially compensated.
  2. Bookworm
    Age: 25-34
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    September 9, 2013
    Bookworm
    Age: 25-34
    This review was written for Band of Sisters - eBook.
    If you're looking for a page-turner, look no further.

    I love books that involve sisters, especially stories full of emotion and angst. I sympathized with Maureen O'Reilly when she was treated unfair and was rooting for her and her sister as they escaped Ireland...to only find new problems.

    Not a dull page. Enjoy!
  3. eb7bibliophile
    High Desert West
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Troubled Women and Historical Scenes. Excellent.
    August 31, 2013
    eb7bibliophile
    High Desert West
    Age: 55-65
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This review was written for Band of Sisters - eBook.
    This story is historical fiction at its best. I felt that it took a long time for the story line to explain the title, but it fell into place. I was disturbed by the actions of the main character when she made questionable choices, but I feel that this was intentional, so we would be warmed by the resolution of the events. I sympathized with Maureen and her good intentions, and Olivia as well. The descriptions were wonderful. I could picture the city, and the factory, and the night-lit streets. I have a somewhat limited knowledge of 1910 New York City, but it felt accurate and believable to me. The plot had some gritty aspects and also a tender treatment of faith and grace. I am very grateful for a clean story with likeable characters.
  4. Terri Gillespie
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Band of Sisters—A Passionate Voice for the Oppress
    August 24, 2013
    Terri Gillespie
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Today's headlines shout of the unspeakable—rape, human trafficking, and oppression of the vulnerable. It's all the more difficult to believe of a country whose constitution and laws were written to protect the innocent—but is this a new phenomenon?

    In award-winning and best-selling author, Cathy Gohlke's newest novel, Band of Sisters, we learn that today's atrocities are not recent events, but are cruelties which have been around for centuries.

    Gohlke takes us back in time to tell the story of the O'Reilly sisters, Maureen and Katie Rose.

    In 1910, Maureen and her younger sister flee Ireland, a place for them that only offers a future of compromising servitude. Maureen places her hope for a better life on a new country and a twenty-year old promise made to her father by a stranger, Colonel Wakefield. Still, the promise is better than her and her sister's present reality.

    After enduring the challenges and indignities of Ellis Island, Maureen learns that their benefactor has died. There is a mix-up with Colonel Wakefield's family, with the end result of the brother-in-law refusing to honor the colonel's debt.

    With her sister ill, and now the threat of deportation looming over her, Maureen hatches a plan to obtain employment in a department store that caters to the affluent. It's not long before she stumbles upon an alarming subterfuge at the respectable establishment. Women are disappearing. Maureen's experience as one oppressed by wealthy men, compels her to question—too aggressively—the disappearances.

    Meanwhile, the two sisters struggle to make ends meet as well as to get along. Katie Rose is captivated by the wealthy and is blinded by the frivolous, superficial lifestyles centered on them. She even turns her back on her own sister.

    As women continue to disappear, Maureen participates in a dangerous plot headed by her employer's business partner and her friend who has recently emigrated from Ireland—and who has loved Maureen for many years.

    Maureen is swallowed up by the colossal wave of human trafficking. The scope of its cruelty and deviousness is more than she could imagine or handle. What transpires will have the reader sitting long into the night, gripping the pages with anticipation to see what happens next.

    For years, Cathy Gohlke has written—beautifully and with great passion—the stories of the oppressed. In Band of Sisters, she digs even deeper to bring to light the depravities of humanity, yet strives to elevate our hearts with hope for God's healing and restoration.

    Band of Sisters is also an opportunity to teach us to tune our hearts, minds, and ears to the contemporary problems of human trafficking. By teaching us, we can be like Maureen and not turn away from those in need.

    Band of Sisters has become one of my favorite books.
  5. reli
    WI
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Very good read
    August 19, 2013
    reli
    WI
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This book was a fascinating read.  While I remained fairly sure that everything was going to work out okay, it was a thrilling read to find out exactly how it all did work out.  I will admit to reading ahead a bit just to make sure that  Maureen really did escape being captured.  I thought Cathy had a really good way of writing and I would definitely be interested in reading more of her books.  
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