The O'Briens

The O'Briens

A Novel

Book - 2011
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"A family saga spanning half a century in the lives of a restless and ambitious clan starts with the story of backwoods youth-turned-railroad magnate Joe O'Brien, who after leaving the Canadian wilds and sharing a passionate courtship with Iseult, becomes the patriarch of a family that sees the first airplanes, two world wars and the election of JFK. By the award-winning author of The Law of Dreams"--From publisher.
Publisher: New York : Pantheon Books, [2011], ©2011
Edition: First U.S. edition
ISBN: 9780307379931
Branch Call Number: FICTION Beh
Description: 384 pages ; 25 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Sensitive character development and well developed story line. Author knows his history and embeds plot lines in historical events. We really get an insight into the difficulties/threats of life in rural Canada and the stress of emigration.

Mar 04, 2012

Peter Behrens continues the family saga from "The Law of Dreams". For those who enjoy this genre it is an excellent read.

Sep 26, 2011

This is a continued story of the O'Brien family from the award winning book "The Law of Dreams" although it stands on its own quite nicely. Those who appreciate Peter Behrens writing will enjoy this book.

* Alta Vista Sep 20, 2011

Peter Behrens will be reading from The O'Briens at the Main Library, 120 Metcalfe St. on Tues, Oct 25th, 2011 12:00-1:00.
Don't miss this chance to meet the author!

Cdnbookworm Sep 10, 2011

This is the saga of Joe O'Brien and his family. It starts in the Pontiac region along the Ottawa River, but ranges across North America to the Canadian Rockies, to Venice Beach, California, and back again. Joe spends most of his married life in Montreal, as does one of his brothers. We see the strong feelings around families here with Joe's support for his siblings and theirs for him and his family. We see marital difficulties, influences of war, and the more mundane everyday aspects of life.
Joe is involved in the Canadian railway boom, the military industry of both World Wars, and construction of many infrastructure projects. He dreams big and yet sometimes doesn't know what he really wants. We see how people love each other, but don't always understand each other.
This is an engaging book, with characters that capture the imagination.

debwalker Jul 31, 2011

"in giving his family a past few of them knew existed, Behrens has made them unforgettably alive."
John Barber
Globe & Mail
July 29 2011


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number


Subject Headings

LibraryThing Series Information


Find it at CRRL

To Top