My rating: 4 of 5 stars
A very touching and sweet story. It was interesting to learn a bit of Carnegie’s background.
November 4, 1963, irish immigrant Clara Kelley steps on an American soil for the very first time with only one bag in her hand and no place to go. Strangely enough, she hears her name called. There is a confusion, another girl with the exact same name never got off the boat, and Clara decides to take her place. She has no idea where she is going and what is waiting for her when she will get there.
Fortunately for our young Ms. Kelley, she is being employed as a lady’s maid by a very nice and respectful family. Clara builts a great relationship with her mistress… and with her son – Andrew Carnegie. Years go by and the friendship between Andrew and Clara grows. He shares his business wisdom with her, and Clara seems to be very eager to learn. Together, with Clara’s ideas and Andrew’s money they open a new business that keeps growing. Something else is growing in Andrew and Clara’s relationship… their feelings towards each other. The young girl has been warned about servant/master relationship multiple times by her only friend in the house, a cook Mr. Ford and her cousin and his family that live in the same town. This type of “friendship” never ends well. Clara is a smart girl herself, she understands that any type of relationship with Mrs. Carnegie’s son can lead to her losing a job which is her only source of income. Andrew is very persistent. However, there is something else that stands between them… her little secret… she never told anyone that she is impersonating another girl, a girl that died on the ship and who place Clara has taken.
Mr. Ford and Clara’s cousins were right. Everything comes to an end. Mrs. Carnegie discovers both of Clara’s secrets, and the young girl is being ordered to leave the residence immediately. Clara has no other choice but to follow Mrs. Carnegie’s order. She leaves her job, love of her life and her future in Carnegie’s Pittsburgh mansion.
I wish the author would tell us more about what has happened to Clara. Where did she go? How her life turned out to be. The last chapter gives us a few tiny clues. But I wish to learn more… There should be a second part of the book when our wonderful writer answers all our unsettled questions.