A Wee Bit of Irish Lace
by Mary Ann Waldron
Minnesota Heritage Publishing

"’As I was planning the pattern of my web, I realized shamrock leaves look almost like a gathering of three little hearts.’"

Two young brides are treated to the charm of the mystical shamrock and the playful assistance of a leprechaun. Mara is in despair; she and her beloved Patrick can never wed because he can’t afford the required dowry. She wanders out into the woods, lonely and crying, and there meets Sean, one of the legendary wee people. He hears her story and tells her to meet him again the next day. When she does, he fills her apron with gold coins for the dowry and her hands with shamrocks, telling her that, “A shamrock is a wonderful flower, / With three little leaves it has much power.”

Enjoined by Sean to tell other brides of the shamrock’s secret, Mara will do so all her life. 80 years later, her great-granddaughter, Colleen, is getting married. Colleen will have her own meeting with Sean, help battle the evil Devin who is cutting down all the shamrocks in the woods, and receive a remarkable spider web that becomes bridal lace for her special day.

Waldron’s captivating small book combines her engaging story with poetry and the very rich graphic talents of award-winning illustrator Ingrid Kallick, whose depictions range from the adorable leprechaun Sean, with his green and gold suit, pointy ears and sparkling eyes, to the beauty of the Spider Spinnette’s amazing web lace and the dark, verdant forest with its many friendly creatures. Waldron, for many years a teacher, imparts to her readers not only the simple, fanciful story of Mara and Colleen but also the lesson inherent in trusting in spirit guidance to make all of life an enchantment of beauty, happiness, and the mystic cycle of threes demonstrated symbolically by the shamrock. Her book is sure to appeal to imaginative girls of a certain age and the young at heart of any age.

RECOMMENDED by the US Review

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