Greta Cahill never believed she would leave her village in the west of Ireland until she found herself on a ship bound for New York, along with her sister.
Greta discovers that in America she can fall in love, raise her own family, and earn a living. Though she longs to return and show her family what she has made for herself, her decision to spare her children knowledge of a secret in her past forces her to keep her life in New York seperate from the life she once loved in Ireland, and tears her from the people she holds closest.
Even fifty years later, when Ireland of her memory bears little resemblance to that of the present day, she fears that it is still possible to lose all when she discovers her children-- with the best of intentions-- have consipired to unite the worlds she's so carefully kept separate for decades.
Mary Beth Keane attended Barnard College and earned an MFA from the University of Virginia, where she was a Henry Hoyns fellow. She was a winner of the Chicago Tribune's Nelson Algren Prize in 2004 and was a 2005 Pushcart Prize nominee. The Walking People is her first novel.