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Seven Letters

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J. P. Monninger, author of the international bestseller The Map That Leads to You, the novel Nicholas Sparks called “romantic and unforgettable", tells a poignant love story of the ways the world divides two souls—and the way that love brings them together. Kate Moreton is in Ireland on sabbatical from her teaching position at Dartmouth College when she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a J. P. Monninger, author of the international bestseller The Map That Leads to You, the novel Nicholas Sparks called “romantic and unforgettable", tells a poignant love story of the ways the world divides two souls—and the way that love brings them together. Kate Moreton is in Ireland on sabbatical from her teaching position at Dartmouth College when she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman and a veteran of the American war in Afghanistan. The Ferriter family history dates back centuries on the remote Blasket Islands, and Ozzie – a dual citizen of Ireland and the United States – has retreated to the one place that might offer him peace from a war he cannot seem to leave behind. Beside the sea, with Ireland’s beauty as a backdrop, the two fall deeply in love and attempt to live on an island of their own making, away from the pressures of the outside world. Ireland writes its own love stories, the legends claim, and the limits of Kate and Ozzie’s love and faith in each other will be tested. When his demons lead Ozzie to become reckless with his life—and Kate’s—she flees for America rather than watch the man she loves self-destruct. But soon a letter arrives informing Kate that her heroic husband has been lost at sea, and Kate must decide whether it is an act of love to follow him or an act of mercy to forget.


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J. P. Monninger, author of the international bestseller The Map That Leads to You, the novel Nicholas Sparks called “romantic and unforgettable", tells a poignant love story of the ways the world divides two souls—and the way that love brings them together. Kate Moreton is in Ireland on sabbatical from her teaching position at Dartmouth College when she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a J. P. Monninger, author of the international bestseller The Map That Leads to You, the novel Nicholas Sparks called “romantic and unforgettable", tells a poignant love story of the ways the world divides two souls—and the way that love brings them together. Kate Moreton is in Ireland on sabbatical from her teaching position at Dartmouth College when she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman and a veteran of the American war in Afghanistan. The Ferriter family history dates back centuries on the remote Blasket Islands, and Ozzie – a dual citizen of Ireland and the United States – has retreated to the one place that might offer him peace from a war he cannot seem to leave behind. Beside the sea, with Ireland’s beauty as a backdrop, the two fall deeply in love and attempt to live on an island of their own making, away from the pressures of the outside world. Ireland writes its own love stories, the legends claim, and the limits of Kate and Ozzie’s love and faith in each other will be tested. When his demons lead Ozzie to become reckless with his life—and Kate’s—she flees for America rather than watch the man she loves self-destruct. But soon a letter arrives informing Kate that her heroic husband has been lost at sea, and Kate must decide whether it is an act of love to follow him or an act of mercy to forget.

30 review for Seven Letters

  1. 4 out of 5

    Larry H

    One of those books you devour but you don’t want it to end. "There’s no cure for love but to love more." Kate, on sabbatical from her teaching position at Dartmouth, travels to Ireland to do research for her doctoral dissertation about the Blasket Islands, a remote part of the country that the government migrated everyone away from years ago. Shortly after arriving she meets Ozzie, the immensely handsome, part Irish-part American grandson of a woman she met on he One of those books you devour but you don’t want it to end. "There’s no cure for love but to love more." Kate, on sabbatical from her teaching position at Dartmouth, travels to Ireland to do research for her doctoral dissertation about the Blasket Islands, a remote part of the country that the government migrated everyone away from years ago. Shortly after arriving she meets Ozzie, the immensely handsome, part Irish-part American grandson of a woman she met on her journey. Ozzie is intense, mercurial, a veteran of the war in Afghanistan. He has fled to Ireland in the hopes he can put the memories of the war behind him. Kate and Ozzie fall intensely in love. She knows she’s only in Ireland for a short while and knows she needs to concentrate on her research. But her love overwhelms her, and the two try to build a life on one of the islands away from everyone else. It is idyllic at times, at times challenging, and when Ozzie is unable to escape the pain of his memories, it tears at the fibers of their relationship. When Ozzie’s impulsive nature puts both of them at risk, Kate returns to America and tries to put the memories behind her. And while they creep back from time to time, she is doing somewhat well—until she gets word that Ozzie is lost at sea, presumed dead, and she feels the need to travel to Europe to find out what happened to him. She must decide whether she’s ready to move on fully or whether she needs to be tethered to his memory for her own sake. I’m a total sap, and this book was utterly up my alley. I thought it was beautifully written—having the gorgeousness of Ireland as a backdrop doesn’t hurt—and it captured me fully. The instant-love plot thread may seem a little overly dramatic and/or unrealistic for some but you can totally see two people be utterly consumed by the fire of their love without thinking. I can’t get this one out of my head. I've never read anything J.P. Monninger has written before, but I'll definitely do so again. See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com. You can follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Erin

    Thanks to Netgalley and Jordan Hanley of St. Martin's Press for a digital galley in exchange for an honest review. Here I go again! Reading a book that won't be published for many months, but I fell into temptation. See I read J.P. Monniger's The Map that Leads to You in 2017 and that book abruptly knocked me off my feet and melted my cynical heart. Forgive me ARCs of April and May, I will read many of you this long weekend! Synopsis: Irish-American professor, Kate Mereton heads to Ireland, rese Thanks to Netgalley and Jordan Hanley of St. Martin's Press for a digital galley in exchange for an honest review. Here I go again! Reading a book that won't be published for many months, but I fell into temptation. See I read J.P. Monniger's The Map that Leads to You in 2017 and that book abruptly knocked me off my feet and melted my cynical heart. Forgive me ARCs of April and May, I will read many of you this long weekend! Synopsis: Irish-American professor, Kate Mereton heads to Ireland, researching the Blasket Islands, located in the Dingle Pennisula (which sound so interesting-where's my passport?) and meets many intriguing characters. Amongst them is a veteran of Afghanistan and local fishermen, Ozzie Ferriter. Ozzie and Kate have a tense first meeting but it isn't too long until they give into their feelings and begin a passionate affair. In true Monniger fashion, his characters are as complicated as they are passionately in love. As the story is told completely from the point of view of Kate, we see her worries about balancing the work life she enjoys so much with the man she is still getting to know. Personally, I would have enjoyed getting a little bit into Ozzie's mind. I felt his absence greatly especially in terms of certain events that unravel in the second half of the novel. Honestly, Kate was hard for me to like, but I doubt I would have dealt with such a relationship any differently. I am quickly becoming a fan of this author and I await further works with great longing. Although I had a difficult time buying into the relationship of Kate and Ozzie, I would still recommend this to contemporary romance fiction readers. Goodreads review 19/04/19 Publication Date 10/08/19

  3. 4 out of 5

    Ann-Marie

    I knew when I picked this book up I was going to get "all the feels" from it, and what's more I was going to let it happen. That says a lot. I don't do romance novels. I read them on occasion, but I keep my emotional distance. My life has had all the romance it can handle, with the resulting joy, the pain of loss, the nostalgia, the growth, all of it. I don't want to read it. I've lived it. I already had the best life and love could give. It's not going to come for me again, not at my time of li I knew when I picked this book up I was going to get "all the feels" from it, and what's more I was going to let it happen. That says a lot. I don't do romance novels. I read them on occasion, but I keep my emotional distance. My life has had all the romance it can handle, with the resulting joy, the pain of loss, the nostalgia, the growth, all of it. I don't want to read it. I've lived it. I already had the best life and love could give. It's not going to come for me again, not at my time of life, and I don't let those feelings out of the box for some headstrong, buxom governess panting over the brooding earl. In other words, the story must hold a treasure beyond heaving breasts and throbbing male members. "Seven Letters" has that treasure. Kate Morton is a living, breathing, worthy character outside of her love for Ozzie Ferriter, whom she meets while doing research on Ireland. She has to be. The two of them crash into each other and recoil again and again from their first meeting. But each time they come together a bit of each of them rubs off and begins to create a new person, one neither of them recognizes. Kate realizes she does not know this man she married, yes married(!) on a whim. Who does that? (Well, I did, and it turned out to be the love of a lifetime, so you never know.) She does what many of us would do. She runs. She recreates her life. Again. It's good. Really. It is. She even has a new man, whom she can't marry because she is still technically married to Ozzie. But, that's a minor thing. Then she gets a phone call from Ireland and her world falls apart. I received this book free from St. Martin's Press in exchange for an honest review on Goodreads.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Laura Rash

    This was an incredibly moving book. All about love and loss in a unique story that I literally couldn’t put down.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Alexandria

    Not typically the genre I go for but I had the chance to read this and I'm so glad I did. I was totally drawn in by the setting, Ireland's just one of those magical places I always want to read about. The story was romantic and heart wrenching at times. It's one of those stories where you're literally pages from the end thinking despite everything it's ending one way but then you're surprised. If romance is your genre I definitely recommend giving this a read and even if it isn't if you were int Not typically the genre I go for but I had the chance to read this and I'm so glad I did. I was totally drawn in by the setting, Ireland's just one of those magical places I always want to read about. The story was romantic and heart wrenching at times. It's one of those stories where you're literally pages from the end thinking despite everything it's ending one way but then you're surprised. If romance is your genre I definitely recommend giving this a read and even if it isn't if you were interested enough to read this review I'd give it a go, like me you might find yourself pleasantly surprised at how much you like this book!

  6. 4 out of 5

    Hristina

    You can also read this review on my blog illbefinealonereads. A huge thanks to St. Martin's Press for the chance to be a part of this blog tour. As you might know by now, the mere mention of Ireland is enough for me to be highly interested in a book. This time however, it wasn’t only that, it was also my prior experience with J.P. Monninger’s writing that had me excited to pick up Seven Letters. I loved the story it had to offer. It had a few twists in it, but it was heartwarming. I thought You can also read this review on my blog illbefinealonereads. A huge thanks to St. Martin's Press for the chance to be a part of this blog tour. As you might know by now, the mere mention of Ireland is enough for me to be highly interested in a book. This time however, it wasn’t only that, it was also my prior experience with J.P. Monninger’s writing that had me excited to pick up Seven Letters. I loved the story it had to offer. It had a few twists in it, but it was heartwarming. I thought it was beautifully executed, I really enjoyed how it was laid out and paced. It was so well written, the descriptions of Ireland were masterful, and so vivid that they jumped from the page. The relationships set between the characters felt dynamic, which made the book even more entertaining. I was engrossed in the book from the beginning and I had a hard time putting it down, eager to find out what happened next. It’s an excellent romance read that you should definitely pick up. *Copy received through NetGalley *Rating 4/5 stars YOU CAN FOLLOW ME ON: MY BLOG | INSTAGRAM | TWITTER

  7. 5 out of 5

    Lisa Aiello

    And now comes the hard part. Finding the words for a review. I enjoyed this book tremendously, but not in the traditional sense. It was slow - much more a character driven story. The writing was phenomenal. I could see every sight clearly. I could taste the sea air. I could feel the chill in the air. This is the story of Kate, who ends up in Ireland to write a research thesis (or dissertation, or one of the college-y things). She ends up meeting some pretty amazing characters, Ozzie being one of And now comes the hard part. Finding the words for a review. I enjoyed this book tremendously, but not in the traditional sense. It was slow - much more a character driven story. The writing was phenomenal. I could see every sight clearly. I could taste the sea air. I could feel the chill in the air. This is the story of Kate, who ends up in Ireland to write a research thesis (or dissertation, or one of the college-y things). She ends up meeting some pretty amazing characters, Ozzie being one of them. They quickly fall in love, consumed by each other and the bubble they've built around them. But they don't really know each other. Ozzie carries some baggage from time he spent in Afghanistan and some of the thing he saw and did. He hasn't shared that with anyone, Kate included, but just keeps it deep inside him. Things happen (trying to keep this spoiler free) and Kate and Ozzie decide they are better apart. During this time, Kate has a few revelations about life and what it means to love. But it may be too little too late. If you like beautiful writing, if you like an intelligent story, if you like wistful romance, this one is definitely for you.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Sharon Metcalf

    Seven Letters was a contemporary love story and I thoroughly enjoyed being immersed in J.P. Monninger's words.   I was captivated from the outset and remained engrossed throughout this tale with its themes of love, loss and regrets.   It was a story of self evaluation, reflection and ultimately of hope and redemption. Kate Moreton, the central character, was beginning a 12 month research project for her dissertation centred on the Blasket Islands off the south west coast of Ireland.    Not only Seven Letters was a contemporary love story and I thoroughly enjoyed being immersed in J.P. Monninger's words.   I was captivated from the outset and remained engrossed throughout this tale with its themes of love, loss and regrets.   It was a story of self evaluation, reflection and ultimately of hope and redemption. Kate Moreton, the central character, was beginning a 12 month research project for her dissertation centred on the Blasket Islands off the south west coast of Ireland.    Not only was she discovering the sheer beauty of Ireland and her fathers beloved homeland, but this was also a journey of self discovery. Without going into too many details for fear of spoiling the story, Kate met and fell in love with Ozzie Ferriter, a local fisherman recently returned from serving in the US Navy and doing his part in the Afghanistan war.     Theirs was a deep love but it was not without its challenges.  Ozzie carried dark secrets home from the war and he would not relinquish his burden of guilt.   Whilst at sea with Ozzie a fierce storm caused Kate to re-evaluate her priorities particularly what she wanted from her relationship.  However it was only after a tragedy that she began to appreciate the value of the man she had so easily let go.     Kate goes through a grieving process and there is no small measure of regret.    But the story has an element of hope too as the author touches upon the Syrian refugee crisis and the ways some people have done their part to help the children and families impacted. Each of the characters and relationships were well developed and provided food for thought.   I reflected on some of the hard truths Kate learned and applied them to those things I value most in life.   In the Acknowledgements the author wrote "All novels are co-created in the pen of the writer and the mind of the reader. Thanks for listening to my story.    It was my pleasure and I too give thanks to J.P.Monninger, St Martin's Griffin and NetGalley for the opportunity of reading this digital ARC in exchange for an honest review. P.S. This author has me intrigued and somewhat impressed. Kate was a thoroughly convincing female character and I'd have sworn she was written by another woman, perhaps based upon the authors own experiences.    Not so it seems as J.P Monninger also writes as Joseph Monninger.    Kudos on transcending gender boundaries and bringing Kate to life as you did.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Jamie beauty_andthebook_

    I think the time has come for me to accept that JP Monninger is probably not an author for me. Years ago, I loved this style of book (very Nicholas Sparks-esque on the romance scale - another writer who I've also given up on in recent years) but these sad, troubled, drawn out romances just don't work for me anymore. Monninger is a beautiful writer and his books certainly reflect that, but the plot and pacing unfortunately lose me. There are many romance readers who loved this book and I think the time has come for me to accept that JP Monninger is probably not an author for me. Years ago, I loved this style of book (very Nicholas Sparks-esque on the romance scale - another writer who I've also given up on in recent years) but these sad, troubled, drawn out romances just don't work for me anymore. Monninger is a beautiful writer and his books certainly reflect that, but the plot and pacing unfortunately lose me. There are many romance readers who loved this book and I know I am in the minority, so I hope other readers will consider multiple reviews as well as think about what styles they like best before tossing it aside based solely on me! Thank you to St. Martins for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Cyndi Becker

    Be still my heart! So many words to describe how I felt while reading this book, after reading this book. Maybe beguiled, captivated, charmed, mesmerized. This book spoke to my heart, to my very own fascination with Ireland and reminded me of my LONG AGO trek to this enchanting land. It reminded me of what I wanted to be when I grew up, a historian. A dream set aside for the practicality of life. But I have no regrets and now J.P. Monninger has shared this GEM of a story, I felt as though I live Be still my heart! So many words to describe how I felt while reading this book, after reading this book. Maybe beguiled, captivated, charmed, mesmerized. This book spoke to my heart, to my very own fascination with Ireland and reminded me of my LONG AGO trek to this enchanting land. It reminded me of what I wanted to be when I grew up, a historian. A dream set aside for the practicality of life. But I have no regrets and now J.P. Monninger has shared this GEM of a story, I felt as though I lived a bit of it through Kate Moreton. Kate is a brave and passionate woman matched with a brave and passionate man in Ozzie - but Ozzie is a very broken man. A man trying to outrun (out-sail in his case) his demons all while falling deeply and irrevocably in love. Having traveled to Ireland as a part of her dissertation work, Kate is immediately transported to the subject of her work, the people on the now-vacated Blasket Islands. When she meets Ozzie she really has no idea how much this will change her life, and the spark of physical attraction can't be ignored. Theirs is a whirlwind romance, one that the reader feels in their heart and soul. For me, it had the essence of an EPIC love story; all-consuming, beautiful, soulful and at times, tumultuous. While change is inevitable, Ozzie doesn't manage it well. We start to see how he struggles with his past, experiences neither Kate nor the reader is privy too. They experience happiness and heartbreak, leading Kate to a decision that resets their course. As the letters are shared, you'll come to expect the unexpected. A healthy part of the book had me on tenterhooks. Ready to cry at any moment. Through Kate's eyes, we understand the deep pang of grief and regret she feels. That try, as she might, moving on is agonizing and seemingly impossible. I grappled with her decisions which is, I believe, exactly what Monninger intended. We take quite the trip with Kate, as she sets out to uncover the truth, to come to terms with the past and present, to be able to heal. Monninger's writing is prolific, insightful and contains details that indicate experience and/or a great amount of research. The details capture the essence of the characters and places. This is a character-driven story that is rich and deep in their narratives. Kate really is at the center, as the story is through her eyes, and even though she falters at completely considering a 360 view, it's understandable. She has to protect her heart. The cast of characters that support Kate and Ozzie adds so much to the story, drive the pace and the plotline forward. As I've said this book was all-consuming. I've often seen reviewers say a book as addicting, and all I could think was sure I've read plenty of books that captivate me. But not often do I find myself putting off real life, clamoring to get back to the story as I did with this. There was absolutely no way I was sleeping until I finished. I guess I was addicted. I needed to see their story through to the end. Considering the range of feelings I experienced, what I feared for Kate, I couldn't be happier with how it ended. This is a 5++ star read and one that I HIGHLY recommend. *I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

  11. 4 out of 5

    Robin Loves Reading

    In this touching story by J. P. Monninger, Kate Moreton Has taken a sabbatical and is visiting Ireland. She is a New Englander and what she hopes to accomplish on this trip brings her a mixture of joy and sadness. When Kate first meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman there, and also a man that is a war veteran, he touches her heart. However Ozzie has an innate sadness that love cannot even conquer. Ozzie and Kate spent an idyllic time together but things eventually fall apart. In this touching story by J. P. Monninger, Kate Moreton Has taken a sabbatical and is visiting Ireland. She is a New Englander and what she hopes to accomplish on this trip brings her a mixture of joy and sadness. When Kate first meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman there, and also a man that is a war veteran, he touches her heart. However Ozzie has an innate sadness that love cannot even conquer. Ozzie and Kate spent an idyllic time together but things eventually fall apart. Kate feels she has no choice but to return home to leave Ozzie to fight his battles. However something happens that changes Kate’s entire outlook and ultimately her life. Whenever you read a story with a character that has been affected by war, it is very hard not to be drawn into it. Such is the case with this thought-provoking book. As much is this story dealt with Ozzie’s situation, Kate’s story held quite a bit of depth that kept me turning pages. The ending of the story was really, really good. I expected one thing and got another, and I applaud the author for keeping me at the edge of my seat page after page. I look forward to reading more by him in the future. Many thanks to St. Martin’s for this book for review. This is my honest opinion.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Amy (TheSouthernGirlReads)

    Welp, I am stumped. I am going to start by saying I am giving this book three and a half stars. I enjoyed it. Was it the best thing I have ever read....no. You might ask, why is that Amy? I don't know. I truly don't know. *The setting was lovely. *The characters were explained well. *I liked the characters. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>& Welp, I am stumped. I am going to start by saying I am giving this book three and a half stars. I enjoyed it. Was it the best thing I have ever read....no. You might ask, why is that Amy? I don't know. I truly don't know. *The setting was lovely. *The characters were explained well. *I liked the characters. >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> I did not, however fall in love with the story. I also did not enjoy the ending it wrapped up a little too nicely for me. Ok, one more thing if you are going to name a book Seven Letters....those letters do not need to be introduced at the half way point. That is a lot of letters to get through. I think maybe part of it was I kept waiting for something to happen...and then when I did, I kinda already knew what was going to happen...I know. Super clear lol. I am going to conclude that the synopsis gave away too much. If you are planning on reading this...go in blind. Very, very blind. Overall. I would read the author again. .

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nancy Baker

    First of all, there is Irish in our family so for that sake, I thoroughly enjoyed the story that of Irish heritage, culture and scenery. The story had a very calming peaceful vibe to it. This is a romance (not my normal genre of reading) but I almost felt it more of a romance or love affair with the land and its history, than a love story between people. Like the ferries that transport the visitors to the Blasket Islands, I got swept up in the ebb and flow of the story and longed for more histor First of all, there is Irish in our family so for that sake, I thoroughly enjoyed the story that of Irish heritage, culture and scenery. The story had a very calming peaceful vibe to it. This is a romance (not my normal genre of reading) but I almost felt it more of a romance or love affair with the land and its history, than a love story between people. Like the ferries that transport the visitors to the Blasket Islands, I got swept up in the ebb and flow of the story and longed for more historical insight than was given. The first part of the story drug a bit for me but finally picked up about half-way. I saw on the cover that this story is soon to be a motion picture and I long to see the breathtaking landscapes described within its pages on screen. I found the book entertaining, the writing style smooth and flawless but I never got that "bite" I look for in a story that just reels you in like fish on fresh bait. I received this book free of charge for an honest review. Thank you Goodreads for the opportunity to receive an ARC.

  14. 5 out of 5

    CrowGirl13

    I'm not normally one to read romance novels but the setting of Ireland made me sign up for the giveaway on goodreads and I won. It really does make you think about choices you thought you made for reasons that seemed right for a future and career and the luckiness to be given a second chance. I really loved the whole book and can understand the drive to search for any answer when it comes to looking for them during a period of grief. This book is one that will stay with me for years to come.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Janis Rich

    An absolutely phenomenal book. The descriptions of Ireland are beautiful, far better than many I have read from other popular authors. The story of Kate, the main character, takes many twists and turns as she grows into a true adult. This was my first book by J. P. Monninger but I am definitely going to get her previous one.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Bonnye Reed

    I received a free electronic copy of this novel On August 4, 2019, from Netgalley, J. P. Monninger, and St. Martins Press - Griffin. Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me. I have read this novel of my own volition, and this review reflects my honest personal opinion of this work. This is a book I will want to read again, by an author I will follow. Kate Moreton is a member of the teaching staff at Dartmouth working on her dissertation, a close family history of the settlement of the B I received a free electronic copy of this novel On August 4, 2019, from Netgalley, J. P. Monninger, and St. Martins Press - Griffin. Thank you all for sharing your hard work with me. I have read this novel of my own volition, and this review reflects my honest personal opinion of this work. This is a book I will want to read again, by an author I will follow. Kate Moreton is a member of the teaching staff at Dartmouth working on her dissertation, a close family history of the settlement of the Blasket Islands off the south and west coasts of Ireland, and then the removal of those settlers by the Irish Land Commission in 1953. She has received a scholarship that will allow her to spend a semester in that area, doing research and taking oral histories to add those stories of her father, deceased these last 4 years, and the memories and histories of the enclave of Blasket Islanders who immigrated and settled, along with her family, in the Springfield/Chicopee areas of Massachusetts. She has already a lot of information and feels that a few months on the site will finish her work, and she can move on. J. P. Monninger takes us to those isles, that isolated part of Ireland, her words providing a clear picture of that area, making real the heartbreak being removed from those islands and that way of life was for her family and others. Kate meets many interesting people on her travels to Dingle Peninsula, the dropping off place for the Islands. Most notably she is touched by ancient Nora Crean and her sidekick Shamus. Not to mention Nora's grandson Ozzie Ferriter, a fellow American and military veteran who recently served in Afghanistan. Already she is feeling immersed in the lore that is Ireland. From Dingle, she makes her way to the University of Limerick, where she will live in a small apartment and have a free hand at the associated library to work on her research. It is summer, so many of the carrels at the library are not being used, but Kate gets along well with the occasional drop-in and finds herself with growing friendships among the staff at the university. And then she meets again Ozzie and finds herself falling hard, almost against her will, for this troubled man. And as are most who love those deeply damaged by war, she cannot find a way to reach him, help him, even understand him. But once back home, neither can she forget him. This is an excellent novel with much information and interaction with the refugee problems in Europe and Africa, an exceptional look at what can and cannot be done to help those refugees find asylum, all tied up in an interesting tour of New England Winter and Italy's involvement in the Syrian crisis. It sounds complicated, but it all folds together through seven letters, to and from various protagonists. This is a special read. pub date October 8th, 2019 St. Martin's Griffin Reviewed October 14, 2019, at Goodreads, Netgalley, AmazonSmile, Barnes & Noble, BookBub, Kobo and GooglePlay.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Angela

    I received this book as an arc, and I have to say that I really enjoyed it. J. P. Monninger's writing is truly beautiful and poetic. I could visualize Kate and Ozzie's Ireland, and their adventures at sea while falling deeper in love with these characters who are impulsive and spontaneous. This is a story of love and youth, trusting your instincts, and spending so much time in your own head, that you don't see the real treasure that is right in front of you until you lose it.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Betty

    Beautifully written romance story – and I am not a big fan of romances. The story itself did not grab me but I did enjoy the beautiful descriptions of Ireland and its Blasket Islands. While reading the descriptions I just had to do an image search online to see it for myself. Kate Moreton goes to Ireland on sabbatical from Dartmouth College. As soon as she arrives in Ireland she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman and a veteran of the American war in Afghanistan. There are immediate spa Beautifully written romance story – and I am not a big fan of romances. The story itself did not grab me but I did enjoy the beautiful descriptions of Ireland and its Blasket Islands. While reading the descriptions I just had to do an image search online to see it for myself. Kate Moreton goes to Ireland on sabbatical from Dartmouth College. As soon as she arrives in Ireland she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman and a veteran of the American war in Afghanistan. There are immediate sparks between them and before you know it they are married. Pretty much the entire first half of the book (or more) is focused on descriptions of the islands and the romance between Ozzie and Kate. I loved the descriptions but was bored with the romance. It picks up a bit in the second half but is still very much focused on the romance. Overall I felt the story was just not very realistic. I guess that is part of why I do not care for romances. There was nothing about their relationship that had any depth to it. Ozzie had demons from the war he was trying to run from and I wish there had been more focus on that earlier in the book. His PTSD did not feel real; it was more of a device used to move the story along rather than showing a couple facing the effect of PTSD in a relationship. And the portion at the end set in Canada was just way too contrived for me. I do not want to spoil the latter part of the book for you so will say as little as possible. Throughout the book Kate makes several very significant impulsive (and poor) decisions. She will come to realize that she didn’t fully know the man she married and flees back to the US without a final goodbye to her husband. Kate will now need to decide if she loves Ozzie enough to deal with his sometimes reckless behavior and the demons he harbors. The book is written entirely from Kate’s perspective. I think it might have been much more interesting if we had been allowed into Ozzie’s head from time to time. There were also some minor characters that I would have loved to have more of a role in the book. All the characters seemed to be there only to further the Ozzie and Kate storyline. Thank you to Jordan Hanley at St. Martin's Press for a digital advance galley. These opinions expressed are my own.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Shelley

    Ireland was already on my bucket list of travel destinations, but after reading this captivating story, I would love nothing more than to drop my obligations, pack my bags, and hop on a flight. Seven Letters was truly a lovely story. J.P. Monninger gave such great detail about Ireland and the Blasket Islands that I felt as though I was right there with Kate, feeling the wind in my face and smelling the salty sea air. Kate Moreton was fulfilling a dream of researching the Blasket Islands./>Seven Ireland was already on my bucket list of travel destinations, but after reading this captivating story, I would love nothing more than to drop my obligations, pack my bags, and hop on a flight. Seven Letters was truly a lovely story. J.P. Monninger gave such great detail about Ireland and the Blasket Islands that I felt as though I was right there with Kate, feeling the wind in my face and smelling the salty sea air. Kate Moreton was fulfilling a dream of researching the Blasket Islands. Taking a leave from her university position, she traveled to Ireland to immerse herself in the culture and to learn about the islands and the people who had inhabited them. What she didn’t expect was to grow close to a few people there, including a fisherman by the name of Ozzie Ferriter. It was easy to get swept up in Kate and Ozzie’s story. While they had immediate chemistry, there was definitely a push and pull that made their initial interactions more intriguing. It was a whirlwind relationship that was high on passion, intensity, and love. They fell in love fast and hard, however, I felt the authenticity of it all. I believed in it. Despite their differences, I wanted true love to succeed. Ah, but where would the fun be in a book that was just smooth sailing? Their relationship wasn’t easy. They faced many obstacles not unlike any new relationship, but Ozzie had some demons, and he was holding back some painful memories and guilt, and these demons had the potential to eat away at him and his relationship with Kate. I luxuriated in the writing, felt all of the emotions along with the characters, and held my breath in anticipation of what would become of Kate and Ozzie. I will admit that the author did surprise me with where the story went. I can honestly say that I didn’t expect it to take the direction that it did. There’s nothing better than being surprised and taking an unexpected scenic route. I am certainly glad that I went along for the journey. *I received a copy of the book from the publisher (via NetGalley).

  20. 5 out of 5

    Autumn

    Kate Moreton came to Ireland for more than just to complete the research needed for her dissertation. She also wants to discover more about her father’s early life before his family made their way to America. His death left her feeling set adrift and she thought she would find answers and maybe even a tiny bit of solace on the Blasket Islands. But instead, she finds a man who is as beautiful and isolated as the Islands themselves. Life for Ozzie Ferriter wasn’t always so peaceful. He returned to Kate Moreton came to Ireland for more than just to complete the research needed for her dissertation. She also wants to discover more about her father’s early life before his family made their way to America. His death left her feeling set adrift and she thought she would find answers and maybe even a tiny bit of solace on the Blasket Islands. But instead, she finds a man who is as beautiful and isolated as the Islands themselves. Life for Ozzie Ferriter wasn’t always so peaceful. He returned to Ireland after war marked him both body and soul. Now his days consist of being out on his boat and with his beloved grandmother. When he’s introduced to Kate, he suddenly feels like he’s whole again. As the sparks fly and their passion burns brighter, it’s only a matter of time before two shattered people threaten to fall apart again. “Do you know,” he said when I passed the bottle back to him, “that if a man or woman drinks from the same bottle without wiping it first, it means they are going to make love? It’s an old Irish custom.” “I thought it meant a man couldn’t keep a set of glasses clean.” “That, too, of course.” He took a solid drink. He didn’t wipe the neck of the bottle. His Adam’s apple bobbed twice. “And the tweed cap?” I asked. “I have one somewhere, but I can’t put my hands on it. Do you like Irish whiskey?” “I do.” “Well, that’s a point in your favor.” “Am I trying to win points? I didn’t know we were playing a game.” “I think Gran wants us to play a game. She was born with a caul, you know? She’s said to have second sight.” “Cauls were sold to sailors to keep them from drowning,” I said, calling up what I knew about the subject. “They were talismans to defend against witchcraft.” “I’d need one on both counts, then.” “And they bring good luck. Are you lucky, Ozzie?” “I met you, didn’t I?” To say that I’m a Monninger fan is a massive understatement! Ever since being captivated by The Map That Leads to You, I have waited (not so patiently) for his next gem to be released. And Seven Letters was so much more than I ever hoped for. The writing is lush and dream-like, almost hypnotizing. Even Ireland and the surrounding sea become characters in their own right. But it’s the undeniable connection between Kate and Ozzie that somehow jumps right off the page and gets a grip on your heart. Sometimes it holds it softly and sometimes it steals your breath away. It’s an emotional deluge of the very best kind and I’ll never forget the way it made me feel…

  21. 5 out of 5

    Lorrea - WhatChaReadin'?

    Kate Moreton is a professor at Darthmouth. She is writing about her Irish heritage as a part of her doctoral dissertation and decides to take the semester and spend it in Ireland to do the research she needs to do on the Blasket Islands and the people who used to live there. What she isn't expecting is to fall in love with the place as well as a certain American who also lives there, Ozzie Ferriter. Their romance is fast paced. Will their love be able to last over the oceans or will one of them Kate Moreton is a professor at Darthmouth. She is writing about her Irish heritage as a part of her doctoral dissertation and decides to take the semester and spend it in Ireland to do the research she needs to do on the Blasket Islands and the people who used to live there. What she isn't expecting is to fall in love with the place as well as a certain American who also lives there, Ozzie Ferriter. Their romance is fast paced. Will their love be able to last over the oceans or will one of them make a sacrifice for them to be together. Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin's Press for the opportunity to read and review this book. This was definitely a slow read for me. Overall the story was very bland. Girl does work in Ireland, girl meets boy, boy is mysterious, boy and girl fall in love, what happens next ... The whole story is very slow paced even though it covers a few years. I didn't find myself investing in the characters or the story as a whole. I have read one other book by JP Monninger, a href="https://whatchatreadin.blogspot.com/2... Map That Leads to You, and that one was a bit more interesting. What would you do if you met a man who seemed perfect for you, but he lived a world away. Would you give up the life you've known to be with him or would you find a way for you all to be together? That is the dilemma Kate faces when she meets Ozzie. Will she stay in her native land or return to her home? Is Ozzie really the man that she thinks he is or is his past holding him back from being the man he could be? Can you change someone to be the person you want them to be or do you have to accept them for who they are? All of these are questions that will be answered in the book.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Meza

    This was my first time reading this author, and one the things I loved the most about the experience was to be surprised by the strong narrative voice, the fantastic writing and the story itself. The descriptive level took me to a beautiful place because it wasn’t hard to feel I was there with the characters, witnessing their story unfold. And what a story, my friends. Kate goes to Ireland to write a thesis and ends up falling deeply and madly in love with Ozzie, and they quickly built a bu This was my first time reading this author, and one the things I loved the most about the experience was to be surprised by the strong narrative voice, the fantastic writing and the story itself. The descriptive level took me to a beautiful place because it wasn’t hard to feel I was there with the characters, witnessing their story unfold. And what a story, my friends. Kate goes to Ireland to write a thesis and ends up falling deeply and madly in love with Ozzie, and they quickly built a bubble, a little island, around them to keep the world apart from them. But there’s a thing about those “fast and furious” romances, and that’s you don’t really know the person you’re with, his or her past, his or her secrets, what will make him or her smile, and what will break you apart. And Ozzie is one of those persons that doesn’t share his burdens but keep them inside him. The story was pretty romantic. Heartbreaking for some moments, but beautiful nevertheless. It takes many twists and turns as Kate grows into an adult, also take us on a journey to discover what true love, trust and forgiveness are about. Seven Letters is one of those stories that will keep you turning pages and guessing until the very end. So, if romance is your jam, I definitely recommend giving this book a chance.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Melanie

    Seven Letters is a beautiful love story; one that is not all puppy dogs and roses, but is raw and real. The relationship between Kate and Ozzie is intense and emotional, and I could not help but get drawn in and yearn to read more. Monninger has such a brilliant talent with words and telling a story, as well as an amazing ability to provide such detailed and colorful descriptions of the Ireland landscapes, dialect, and spot-on characters! I loved reading these descriptive scenes and could almost Seven Letters is a beautiful love story; one that is not all puppy dogs and roses, but is raw and real. The relationship between Kate and Ozzie is intense and emotional, and I could not help but get drawn in and yearn to read more. Monninger has such a brilliant talent with words and telling a story, as well as an amazing ability to provide such detailed and colorful descriptions of the Ireland landscapes, dialect, and spot-on characters! I loved reading these descriptive scenes and could almost picture myself being right there alongside Kate. My husband and I went to Scotland on our honeymoon and I so wish I had journaled like Kate did! I, too, saw such beautiful scenes, met some amazing people, and felt a variety of emotions similar to what Kate felt at times. It would have been wonderful to go back and re-live what I experienced y reading journal entries, though I would not be able to do justice with my words such as Monninger has! So much of Seven Letters reminded me of Me Before You by JoJo Moyes, especially the intense and raw emotions between Kate and Ozzie, as well as the tumultuous relationship between them. That is one of my ultimate all-time favorite books and now Seven Letters is right up there with it.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Stephanie R.

    I really enjoyed this one. Based in Ireland how could I not?! Kate feels connected to Ireland because that where her family is from. She is a professor at Dartmouth but goes to Ireland to work on research for a paper she is writing. There she meets Ozzie. Ozzie, is dealing with his memories of war but he and Kate find a special connection. They eventually end of married but because of some incidents Kate leaves him and Ireland behind until one day she receives a call that he was lost at sea. She I really enjoyed this one. Based in Ireland how could I not?! Kate feels connected to Ireland because that where her family is from. She is a professor at Dartmouth but goes to Ireland to work on research for a paper she is writing. There she meets Ozzie. Ozzie, is dealing with his memories of war but he and Kate find a special connection. They eventually end of married but because of some incidents Kate leaves him and Ireland behind until one day she receives a call that he was lost at sea. She goes back to Ireland and ends up learning his boat went down while helping refugees. I did not think this book would be as emotional as the second part ended up being. BUT I just didn’t like how Kate just left him behind when she saw that he was struggling with his inner demons. I don’t think someone can help someone if they don’t want to be helped but I don’t think that was the case with Ozzie. Yes, he said he was fine but I just feel like Kate could have pushed a bit more. Kate struggles with those decisions once she goes back to Ireland. Overall, I would definitely still recommend this book. Thanks to NetGalley and St.Martin’s Press for my review copy.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Konny

    Seven Letters by J.P. Monninger is a full length, standalone romance novel. Seven Letters tells the story of Kate and Ozzie. Kate Moreton is a aspiring professor at a prestge college, about to take a leave of absence to complete her studies. Her vtrip leads her to where her roots lie, beautiful, mysterious Ireland. There she meets Ozzie, an ex-Navy SEAL, now fisherman, a grumpy loner with some serious issues. They fall in insta-love and have a whirlwind relationship. Love conquers Seven Letters by J.P. Monninger is a full length, standalone romance novel. Seven Letters tells the story of Kate and Ozzie. Kate Moreton is a aspiring professor at a prestge college, about to take a leave of absence to complete her studies. Her vtrip leads her to where her roots lie, beautiful, mysterious Ireland. There she meets Ozzie, an ex-Navy SEAL, now fisherman, a grumpy loner with some serious issues. They fall in insta-love and have a whirlwind relationship. Love conquers everything they say. Only sometimes love isn't enough. Seven Letters is a heart wrenching, nailbiting, pageturner. I was captivated from start and read the book, cover to cover, in one sitting. I simply couldn't put it down. It's the story of heartbreak, second chances, finding themselves, true love. It's an emotional read and I cried my way through the book. I liked the pace and the storyline, the writing is excellent and the story is outstanding and beautifully thought out and beautifully told. There's only one question for me, what is a mushroom colored raincoat? I greatly enjoyed reading this wonderful book . I recommend Seven Letters and give 5 beautiful stars.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Marti

    Some books take you on a slow journey into the life of a novel. The book becomes the lifeline for you to read despite the highs and lows of the story, and the actions of the characters. Seven Letters by J P Monninger is such a book. A book that brings you to the heart of the characters, allowing you to join their journey. Kate Moreton teaches at Dartmouth College. She is presently working on her research into the Blasket Islands where her family once came from. It is while in Ireland doing her r Some books take you on a slow journey into the life of a novel. The book becomes the lifeline for you to read despite the highs and lows of the story, and the actions of the characters. Seven Letters by J P Monninger is such a book. A book that brings you to the heart of the characters, allowing you to join their journey. Kate Moreton teaches at Dartmouth College. She is presently working on her research into the Blasket Islands where her family once came from. It is while in Ireland doing her research, she meets Ozzie Ferriter, a fisherman. Both fall into the relationship and into love with each other. Until his demons and her fear run into each other. I loved the characters of Kate and Ozzie, with their flaws and foibles. Thinking that they were able to live on an island of their love without recognizing each person is much more complex. The book did not grab me right away and I needed to give it a bit of time. I love how the Irish legends and poetry are woven within the story. I think this story, while not my traditional love story, is such a powerful and beautiful story. Seven Letters by J P Monninger is a fabulous book.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Nancy

    I didn't expect to enjoy this book as much as I did, since it was a romance, but the scenery and the characters had me from the start. It was for the most part a peaceful, dreamy read, but then there were the rough seas, both literally and figuratively! I found it hard to put down. I'm really glad that I didn't read enough reviews or spoilers to be clued in on the ending, and I would suggest that you also resist that temptation! You will thank me later. I found it interesting, lovely, peac I didn't expect to enjoy this book as much as I did, since it was a romance, but the scenery and the characters had me from the start. It was for the most part a peaceful, dreamy read, but then there were the rough seas, both literally and figuratively! I found it hard to put down. I'm really glad that I didn't read enough reviews or spoilers to be clued in on the ending, and I would suggest that you also resist that temptation! You will thank me later. I found it interesting, lovely, peaceful, exciting, maddening, sad, poignant, rueful, retrospective, thoughtful and hopeful. Many thanks to Net Galley, JP Monninger and the publisher for the ARC, in return for an honest review.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Nicola Short

    How to explain this story? Truly a unusual story...as I was reading this, I actually wasn’t sure what to make of it. Lots of sadness and heartache but, also, lots of love and hope. I loved the descriptions of the scenery and the love between Kate and Ozzie. At times the story seems to just stall and then it would jump forward in time. Overall, I enjoyed the book but it didn’t wow me. Thank you to NetGallery, the publisher and author for the opportunity to read and review this book.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Sue

    Many thanks to Net Galley, JP Monninger and the publisher for the ARC. I can never resist a tale set in Ireland. Not knowing anything about the Blasket Islands intrigued me even more. It did not disappoint. The descriptions were so realistic that I became transported. Romance driven novels are not my usual genre but I did get swept up in the intensity, drama and genuine love between Ozzie and Kate. A solid 4*

  30. 5 out of 5

    Danielle

    While I did enjoy this book, I didn’t like it as much as Map that Leads to You. I wish there had been more of the “now” story instead of so much from the past.

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