Ellie Ames has always dreamed of leaving Monk Island, Maine, a place her family has lived for generations. But as the daughter of a poor lobsterman, she knows that her horizons are limited. All that seems to change in July of ‘39 when a mysterious German couple steps off the ferry with their nineteen-year-old son.
From the moment Ellie meets Karl Brink, the two become inseparable and not everyone approves. Islanders are suspicious of outsiders and her father Jack, who fought in the Great War, has a particular hatred for Germans. But Ellie ignores the scorn of the community, and the secret she knows about Karl’s family makes her even more determined to be with him.
The magical summer ends when the Brinks suddenly have to go home. And although Karl promises to come back in the fall, by then Europe is at war. As the months pass, Ellie clings to the hope that he will return, but after the attack on Pearl Harbor, she realizes it would take a miracle.
With America now in the War, soldiers begin pouring into Monk Island, where the Army has built a large fortification, and the threat of U-boats has people on edge. Finally accepting that Karl is not coming back, Ellie decides to move on. She gets a job on the military base and starts to date a local fisherman, much to her father’s satisfaction. Then one day a letter arrives in the mail that will change her life forever.
The Storm Beyond The Tides is the story of the unlikely romance between a small-town girl and a German on the eve of the Second World War. Their young innocence is no match for the cataclysmic changes around them and they are torn apart. Yet even in a time of great suffering and devastation, the power of love can triumph.
Of all his regrets in life, Jody Brae wished he hadn’t lost touch with his best friend Al Russo. They grew up in the slums of Boston during the Depression—enlisted in the Marines and fought together in Korea. As boys, they were like brothers, but the War changed them and they drifted apart.
Now a detective with the Boston Police, Brae has put those dark years behind him, finally finding in his girlfriend Ruth the love and stability he never had growing up. But after they return from a trip to Ireland, he is shocked to learn that Al Russo has been murdered. Brae has no time to grieve because days later a body is found under a bridge, then another in an alleyway. Not only are they all veterans, but they are all men from his old platoon who were in town for a reunion.
As the killings continue, Brae discovers a secret from the War which might explain why. And while he wants to get justice for Al Russo, he also wants to protect Ruth from the horrors of his past. The question is: can he do both?
Set in the gritty world of 1960’s Boston, Whiskey Point is a story about friendship, loyalty and the cost of forgetting. Under tough circumstances, we all ignore things we shouldn’t, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t happen.
Jonathan Cullen was raised in Boston and attended public schools. After a brief career as a bicycle messenger, he attended Boston College and graduated with a B.A. in English Literature (1995). During his twenties, he wrote two unpublished novels, taught high-school in Ireland, lived in Mexico, worked as a prison librarian and spent a month in Kenya, Africa before finally settling down three blocks from where he grew up.
He currently lives in Boston (West Roxbury) with his wife Heidi and twelve-year-old daughter Maeve.