Toni's Review of The Pub Across the Pond - ***5 Stars***

Scheduled release date: September 27th

Carlene Rivers is many things. Dutiful, reliable, kind. Lucky? Not so much. At thirty, she’s living a stifling existence in Cleveland, Ohio. Then one day, Carlene buys a raffle ticket. The prize: a pub on the west coast of Ireland. Carlene is stunned when she wins. Everyone else is stunned when she actually goes.

As soon as she arrives in Ballybeog, Carlene is smitten not just by the town’s beguiling mix of ancient and modern, but by the welcome she receives. In this small town near Galway Bay, strife is no stranger, strangers are family, and no one is ever too busy for a cup of tea or a pint. And though her new job presents challenges– from a meddling neighbor to the pub’s colorful regulars– there are compensations galore. Like the freedom to sing, joke, and tell stories, and in doing so find her own voice. And in her flirtation with Ronan McBride, the pub’s charming, reckless former owner, she just may find the freedom to follow where impulse leads and trust her heart– and her luck– for the very first time…


One ticket can change the life of many. On the west coast of Ireland in the small town of Ballybeog, things are about to get exciting. An American has just won Uncle Jimmy’s, a white stone pub with bright blue trim and a thatched roof. The townspeople have very mixed feelings about the winner of the lottery. They are a proud people with a history of perseverance and tenacity. The town welcomes her with open arms or so it would seem. Strange things are happening in Ballyboeg and it appears it all started when she arrived.

Carlene Rivers has never been a lucky person. She lost her mother at a very young age and then slowly lost her father. She had a botched marriage to an Irish man and was living an unfulfilling life in Cleveland, Ohio. On a yearly trip to an Irish festival in Dublin, Ohio, Carlene decides to take a chance and she buys a single lottery ticket for an opportunity to win a pub. Being a descendant from the Emerald Isle, some of her fondest memories are of her grandmother reliving her family’s history. When fantasy becomes reality, can Carlene make her dreams come true with a little bit of Irish luck?

How can one of the best hands in poker be beaten? By the hand of fate, that’s how. Ronan McBride held four aces in his hand and he bet his family’s pub to win. A hand like that is always a winner. He now has a month to earn enough money to buy back the pub. Ronan’s sisters don’t trust him and come up with a plan to ensure the pub is safe from their scheming uncle. They decide to hold a lottery for a chance to own the pub.

I read “The Pub Across the Pond” in one sitting. I fell in love with the book and couldn’t put it down even though the sun was rising. From my experience as a recent visitor to Ireland, Ms. Carter did a fabulous job of capturing the essence of the land. She noted key sites without making it sound like a tourist advertisement. Everything Carlene felt I also felt while there. There is nothing like the lure of its history and the touch of magic in the air. You can actually take a breath and feel the enchantment in it. She reminded me of my visit within the pages of this book. She showcased the beauty of the country, the warmth of the people and the magic of their history. The characters were engaging and wonderful. The scenery was so beautifully described that you could imagine you were there. You felt the rain on your face and the wind in your hair. The romance included not only Carlene and Ronan, but the whole town of Ballybeog.

I loved every sentence of this book. I was in heaven from the beginning to the end. This is storytelling at its divine best. Ms. Carter really and truly captured the heart of Ireland; the beauty and charm encompassed in an enchanting tale of discovery, love and hope.

Thanks for reading - Toni


Pam Asberry said…
Oh, Leane, this sounds like a must-read. I dream of going to Ireland one day, so this book sounds perfect. I'm definitely adding this one to my TBR pile. Thanks for the great review!
Marilyn Baron said…
Sounds like a wonderful book. Wow, what a lucky prize.

Marilyn Baron
Love your blog! :) I became a follower! :) Erin
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