Book Review: Reunion, A Search for Ancestors by Ryan Littrell
Often, genealogy books fall into one of two categories: how-to or historical fiction. While I enjoy both, it was refreshing to find an author who was able to walk the reader through the hunt for ancestors, sharing the trials and tribulations we all go through as we chase our lines back through generations.
Mr. Littrell has a gift of merging words into sentences and sentences into eloquently described feelings—feelings that mirror mine exactly as I search for my own ancestors. “And all around was the chance, like a ghost, that an ancestor has walked there! This far west, this far north, some MacDonalds must have lived. Maybe right here…”
From beginning to end, the author walks the reader through his proofs and disproofs of family legends, stories and records. As he found a new item, my heartbeat would speed up, as if it were my own find about my own family. The writing of these parts was moving and I enjoyed spending my time researching his family with him by reading his words.
If it were only this, I would have still loved this book. But to elevate it to even a more amazing level, every other chapter was devoted to telling the Gaelic story of his MacDonald family in great detail, but written from that time. I was able to learn about Scottish clans and old Scotland, by living it in the stories woven by the author. I thank him for lending me his grandfathers before him and allowing them all to weave a tale for me that makes me imagine my own Scottish grandfathers’ lives.
You can find this book on Ancestry in a paperback or Kindle version.
Disclosure: Ryan Littrell sent the author of this article two copies of this book to review—the Kindle version and a paperback version. However, I will share that I have purchased two paperback copies of my own to give as gifts. And I may order a third for another birthday coming up!