by William Patterson
Young Mikey Flynn leaves the tiny Tipperary village of Gortalocca to pursue his calling to the priesthood. But 18th century Ireland is a dangerous time and place. Catholics are being persecuted for practicing their beliefs and priests are being hunted down and executed. Although Mikey takes refuge in a remote village hidden deep in the Cork mountains, the most notorious priest-hunter of all, Captain Percival Grey, is hot on his trail. A tormented psychopath, Grey has become obsessed with tracking down the young priest. Matters become even more complicated when Mikey finds himself falling in love with a beautiful local girl and he struggles with a crisis of faith. Should he pursue his goal and become fully ordained or should he follow his heart?
Back home in Tipperary, his jealous brother is making a play for power. In the hope that Mikey is already dead, Robbie Flynn assumes the role of heir to the legacy which his parents, Liam and Roisin, have worked all their lives to build. His greed and sense of entitlement threaten to destroy the family and, along with it, the very fabric of Gortalocca village.
The High Sheriff is Robert D’Arcy, once a notorious man-hunter himself. D’Arcy is getting on in years and has become discontented and world-weary. But he is also Mikey’s uncle and, at the request of the boy’s mother, he sets out to find his nephew and bring him safely home to Gortalocca. It’s a quest fraught with perils and D’Arcy, together with his young deputy, Ned Flood, finds himself in a life and death race against time. Can they find Mikey Flynn before the psychotic Captain Grey does?
As well as a fast-paced tale of action, adventure and sibling rivalry, Safe Home is also a heart-warming and gentle love story … a story of survival against all odds. It captures the spirit of 18th century Ireland, it tells how the Irish people loved and lived and how they strived to overcome poverty, oppression and persecution.