Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Land of Dreams by Kate Kerrigan

Hi, everyone! Today I'm a stop on the TLC book tour for Kate Kerrigan's Land of Dreams, the third part of her fabulous Ellis Island trilogy!

It's 1942 and the now twice-widowed Ellie Hogan has carved out a nice niche for herself in New York. She's raising two adopted sons and is an up-and-comer in the art scene as well. When her eldest boy, Leo, decides to take off for Hollywood in pursuit of fame and glory, Ellie has no choice but to follow. Initially, her plan is to retrieve her son and return to New York, but when it looks as though stardom might be a reality for Leo, Ellie's plans change. 

But Hollywood is a far cry from New York or even Ireland. 

I was so anxious to get to get back to Ellie's story with Land of Dreams. It's been on my must have list since I turned the final page on City of Hope last year. Seriously, I even considered ordering it from the UK so that I wouldn't have to wait!

That said, I was surprised that the first third of the book is basically backstory to get us up to 1942. It glossed over Ellie's years with Charles and Leo all in order to catch us up on what happened after the last book and get us to the point where the story actually begins. It was disappointing and dragged the momentum of the first part of the book quite significantly.

This start was doubly disappointing because I'd found City of Hope particularly easy to get into even if you hadn't already read Ellis Island and I felt that Land of Dreams didn't have that same approachability. I've so adored each part of Ellie's story that it's become one of my favorite things to recommend to readers. But where readers could start easily with either City or the actual first installment, Ellis, I don't think Land would serve well at all as a diving off point.

Now that that's out of the way, I will tell you that I still greatly enjoyed returning to Ellie. She's a character readers can't help but fall in love with! Her struggles in this book are centered around her kids and her identity. She worries about stifling Leo's dreams but Los Angeles proves to be less than inspiring for her own art and that's something that scares her.

I was glad Bridie traveled to LA in Land! Ellie's friends have always played a big role in her story and while she does make friends in California, Bridie is a favorite from the previous installments. She's feisty and funny and I would have missed her and the way she supports Ellie and her family.

Land of Dreams is a nice close to Ellie's tale but I do recommend reading at least City of Hope beforehand.

Rating: 3.5/5

To see more stops on the tour be sure to check out the official TLC tour page here.

For more on Kate and her work you can visit her website here. You can also like her on Facebook and follow her on Twitter.

1 comment:

Heather J @ TLC Book Tours said...

I'm glad that you enjoyed this one in spite of the slower start. Ellie sounds like QUITE a character!

Thanks for being a part of the tour.