Source : JustBooks Library, Bangalore
Year of Release: 1976
Trinity is the story of Ireland from the Great Irish Famine in 1840s to the Easter Rising of 1916. More than that it is the story of Irish Catholics, their struggle in their own land for the sake of their religious beliefs, the British colonization and exploitation of Ireland.As usually seen in novels by Leon Uris, Trinity is a beautiful blend of fiction and history. There are characters which are entwined very well to portray the history in a very interesting way. This is what makes Leon Uris novels like Exodus so much fun to read.
Seamus O’Neill is the narrator of the story. The story starts while Conor Larkin the protagonist and Seamus are in their early adolescence. There are other characters in the story like Roger Hubble the British aristocrat, Cornelia his wife, Sir Fredrick West, but the focus of the book is the three generations of Larkin family mainly the life of Conor Larkin.
Conor Larkin just like his father and grand father are rebel Catholics who understand the depth of the exploitation faced by Irish Catholics. The never ending hatred between Protestants and Catholics in Ireland has been conveniently exploited by the British Empire to implement the ‘Divide and Rule’ policy.
I was initially scared to start reading this book as a 900 page book is quite a long read. But I couldn’t put it down once I started it. The story did feel a bit long towards the second half, but that lasted only for a few pages. Personally I enjoyed every bit of this book. It is true that the history portrayed in this novel may be far from the actual truth, but from my past experience I know that it cannot be too far from truth either.
Conor Larkin is the strong point of the story. Many can say that he is a larger than life character, but I believe his character is not an impossible one either; otherwise the world could never have had such great leaders like Mahatma Gandhiji, Nelson Mandela etc who strived hard for their causes. Conor Larkin is portrayed as a strong man who cannot get the cause of Ireland from his life. Though he was many a times tempted to flee Ireland, he always comes back to his own country.
The history of Ireland was something which never came into my realm of thought until I started reading this book. Even the difference or enmity that existed between Protestants and Catholics in the past was unknown to me. So this book was a total eye opener to me.
I find it difficult to put down my precise thoughts on this particular book. So I would just stop after recommending it to every one who doesn’t get scared by a 900 page book. Believe me. Try reading it, the story will take you till the end of the book :) And I am currently tempted to read more on these subjects. ( which should be cured very soon when I got hold of another great book)
Other books by Leon Uris reviewed on this blog: