Last of the Name


Product Details

$17.99  $16.73
Carolrhoda Books (R)
Publish Date
5.7 X 7.6 X 1.3 inches | 0.9 pounds

Earn by promoting books

Earn money by sharing your favorite books through our Affiliate program.

Become an affiliate

About the Author

Rosanne Parry is the author of the acclaimed novels A Wolf Called Wander, A Whale of the Wild, A Horse Named Sky, Heart of a Shepherd, Second Fiddle, and Written in Stone. She has taught writing at schools, conferences, educational nonprofits, and online at the Loft Literary Center and works as an independent bookseller. She and her family live in an old farmhouse in Portland, Oregon. She writes in a tree house in her backyard.


"Civil War New York springs to life with danger, humor, and grit. You can feel the dance steps as a young immigrant's family traditions bring him strength and connection in a challenging new world. Historical fiction with a strong resonance today."--Emily Whitman, author of The Turning

--Other Print

"With loving attention to detail, Rosanne Parry recreates Civil War-era New York City and the struggles of intrepid Irish immigrants. More than a survival story, Last of the Name is a celebration of the power of music and family to sustain us through hard times. Truly a grand adventure!"--Deborah Hopkinson, author of How I Became a Spy: A Mystery of WWII London

--Other Print

"Last of the Name is a rich, brave, brawling novel of the immigrant experience, bringing the cacophony of Civil War-era New York City vividly to life. Painstakingly researched, this story of holding on to family and heritage while making a new home in America is told with poetry, humor, and heart."--Susan Fletcher, author of Shadow Spinner, Walk Across the Sea, and Journey of the Pale Bear

--Other Print

"Twelve-year-old Danny O'Carolan and his older sister, Kathleen, escape hunger and oppression in Ireland for the promise of a new life in America. With the threat of starvation, disease, violence, and racism on every corner, life in 1863 New York City is scarcely better for two orphans trying to find their way in the world. Danny is tempted to join the Union Army, but Kathleen insists they stay together. Unfortunately, the only work available is that of a lady's maid and a laundress. Danny gamely dons a dress in hopes of passing as a girl, but he lives for the mornings when he can escape into the city and be himself. There, he earns pennies for his dancing and singing and attracts the attention of a man who owns a theater. But he also learns that the Irish are hated not just for their faith, but because they are competing for low-wage jobs with the native-born population, including African-Americans, setting the stage for the unrest that caused the New York City draft riots. Familiar historical events are given new life through Danny's wide-eyed optimism and Kathleen's determination. And while the principals are Irish, their neighborhood boasts as diverse a population as modern Manhattan. An author's note further explains the explosive events of 1863 as the population of New York City swelled with a wave of immigrants. An exuberant dash through a pivotal year in American history."--starred, Kirkus Reviews


"Parry intrigues with a tale of 12-year-old Danny O'Carolan, who has fled Ireland for a new life in 1860s New York City. With his older sister and the musical traditions of his Irish home, Danny finds a tough new world in America. With very few jobs available for boys, and a burning desire to avoid the orphanage, he agrees to pretend to be a girl in order to be employed as a maid with his older sister. However, the Civil War is raging and the draft looms--with an expanding Irish population making an ideal draft target. Middle grade readers with an interest in historical fiction will enjoy this selection. Parry is successful at detailing the Irish immigrant experience in America. She retains a youthful perspective on the important, relevant topics of immigration and acceptance. VERDICT An excellent addition to any historical fiction collection; recommended for fans of Little Women or A Tree Grows In Brooklyn."--School Library Journal


"It's 1863 when 12-year-old Danny and his 16-year-old sister, Kathleen, arrive in New York City penniless. The only job Kathleen can find is in domestic servitude, but there's a catch: there's no spot for a boy, so they dress up Danny as Kathleen's sister. Danny struggles with all of it, especially once his eyes are opened to the many hardships of being female in the mid-nineteenth century. In one of the few moments out on the streets as himself, he's noticed for his dancing and his pure, golden voice. Could it be their ticket out of this hardscrabble existence? Textured and well-researched, Parry's latest historical novel brings to life New York City during the peak of the Civil War, particularly the tensions between the Irish immigrants and freedmen, as well as the looming draft riots. For Danny and Kathleen, there are no easy choices, but for every prejudiced, small-minded person they encounter, there seems to be another willing to sacrifice something of themselves for others. Nuanced and resonant for today's readers."--Booklist