cover image When Summer's in the Meadow

When Summer's in the Meadow

Niall Williams. Soho Press, $17.95 (224pp) ISBN 978-0-939149-23-0

In 1985, this Irish-American couple moved from the hectic world of New York book publishing to a small farm in Ireland, attempting to recapture the simpler life of their ancestors. In O Come Ye Back to Ireland, they chronicled their first year. Here they continue the account of their lives as novice farmers in County Clare, describing their successes and failures, the crops and animals they learn to nurture, and the caring neighbors who are always ready to help and instruct. Most poignantly, they tell of their bitter disappointment at learning that they cannot have a child of their own, and of the difficult decision to begin the adoption process. At the heart of the book is the story of a year of waitingwaiting to be approved by the Irish Adoption Board, waiting for a baby, waiting for the baby to be legally theirs. When Deirdre is finally their own and the farm begins to thrive, their contentment is complete. This is the unassuming tale of two people who return to the land and succeed. (Mar.)