I Couldn’t Love You More

Ecco: HarperCollins. Jul. 2021. 384p. ISBN 9780063057180. pap. $16.99. F
There were no happy outcomes for young girls who found themselves pregnant in the strict Catholic Ireland of the recent past. This is the predicament of Rosaleen Kelly, a 19-year-old whose love affair with an older man ends abruptly when he turns up comatose in hospital, with a wife by his bedside. Her only choice is no choice—to seek shelter in a convent run by disapproving nuns who take in unwed mothers and place their babies for adoption. This three-stranded story belongs to Rosaleen; her heartbroken mother, Aoife, who never comes to terms with her daughter’s disappearance; and Kate, the daughter Rosaleen is forced to give up. Decades later, as Kate’s marriage to a philandering alcohol-addicted musician unravels, her need to find her first mother intensifies.
VERDICT The story of unwed Irish mothers losing their babies to forced adoptions is similar to books and films like Philomena, but Freud’s (Mr. Mac and Me) telling is fresh and moving. The mystery of whether the three women will ever reconnect gives the novel urgency.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing