“Northern Branches” – a quick peek

This coming of age novel focuses on the story of Kitty, a young Protestant Northern Irish girl, exposed to the turbulent political landscape of the 1970s and 80s. In this idyllic, rural setting, IRA sectarian terrorism and religion polarizes opinions and restricts Kitty.

Kitty experiences the cinematic horror of the “Troubles” far too often. The resulting pressure damages Kitty and unravels her multi-generational, larger-than-life family. Northern Branches explores the notion of family loyalty no matter what the odds.

Kitty becomes a solitary, introspective teen who realizes that she is surrounded by mysteries and secrets. Her search for understanding and truth brings surprising results. Education offers the only escape from Ireland’s fraught politics, and rigid attitudes.

After the sudden death of a close family member, vulnerability and grief hamper Kitty’s good sense. Can one misguided act destroy Kitty’s very future and once close relationship with her brother Michael? Kitty faces a growing number of dangers. Will tendrils of hope emerge in Kitty’s darkened world? Will she accept her limitations? Can she embrace tenacity and courage to make an unspeakable sacrifice to protect her family?

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