The Titanic had left Southampton, touched at Queensland, and was steaming across the North Atlantic. Reports of ice were coming in, the air temperatures were dropping toward the freezing mark, driving the passengers indoors, though down in the bowels of the ship the black gang toiled in the inferno of the coal holds and furnace rooms.
The Titanic, the Pride of Belfast, was on her maiden voyage. We know how the ship’s story ends, but what of the men who built her and made her run? Donal’s Jimmy left on the ship, intending to get a look at America.
The best jobs in 1911 Belfast are in the shipyards, but Donal Gallagher’s pay packet at Harland and Wolff doesn’t stretch far enough. He needs someone to share his rented room; fellow ship-builder Jimmy Healy’s bright smile and need for lodgings inspire Donal to offer. But how will he sleep, lying scant feet away from Jimmy? It seems Jimmy’s a restless sleeper, too, lying so near to Donal…
In a political climate turned volatile, Jimmy fears he’ll have to choose sides. He’d do anything to keep his Donal safe, even emigrating. Will shoveling coal on the ship nicknamed The Pride of Belfast make a new beginning for them, or the end?
Happy ending, I promise. One reason for the 5 star review at Speak Its Name.