Gwen Sullivan explores the life of her sister Tessie, a woman whose destiny is laid down by law—Murphy’s Law. Watching her stumble from one calamity to the next, Gwen struggles to pick up the pieces, unaware that the tragicomic tale is no longer just Tessie’s, but also her own.
While her career as a dentist in the late eighties appears promising, Tessie’s life changes abruptly when a mix-up at work leads to serious consequences. Hoping to find peace of mind, she goes on a skiing holiday to Yugoslavia where she becomes involved with a military pilot—and that at a time when the Balkan States are teetering on the brink of war.
What They Are Saying About There and Back
Gwen rushes headlong into Tessie's disaster-prone life, pulled into the vortex of her sister's infelicities through an unstoppable pace of suspense, exasperation and comic relief. Gwen comes to realize that "something greater, something bigger than ourselves waited out there to be discovered. Tessie had always known that, and only now could I begin to appreciate it." From an early scene reminiscent of Nabokovian pubescent sensuality to the climatic chase of a stalker-cum-savior in pursuit of mismatched lovers in pre-war Yugoslavia, Trisha FitzGerald-Petri once again casts her trademark narrative spell with panache, wit and grace.
Rosana Preciado, Ph.D.
Lecturer, Institute for England and America Studies
Goethe University Frankfurt
The topics in Trisha Fitzgerald’s books revolve principally around women and what happens when “love” enters into their lives, (as in “Casting Off”) or when there’s a perceived lack of “love” (as in “Making Tracks” when Peggy breaks out of her marriage). True to her style Fitzgerald-Petri begins “There and Back” with a sensitive psychological portrait of the young Irish girl, Tessie, who is bright, precocious and adept at handling herself in the exciting game of men and sex. When Tessie goes to Yugoslavia and falls in love with a Serb pilot the plot blossoms. Fitzgerald-Petri is at her best here, handling her characters, plot, and story-line with a light, easy mastery of the language. Intrigue and suspense arise naturally from the telling of her story and make it into a page turner.
Master in Literature, Middleburg University
Short Story Author
In this story one can really feel the atmosphere of the Irish Countryside. Trisha's description brings to mind the smells of the land, the food, the people's lives, all entwined as one. Travelling along the road through the villages one could actually believe they are there in spirit if not in body. And behind this quiet, peaceful land, there is the threat of danger as Tessie manages to get herself into one pickle after another.
Trisha takes her time weaving this story together, taking the reader deeper and deeper into the intrigue she so cleverly unwinds. She deftly exposes the depth of her characters' tribulations, and emotions, while, at the same time, merging them into an environment full of intrigue and life–threatening danger...
Elena Dorothy Bowman, Author of:
The Sarah's Landing Series, The Legacy Series,
Time-Rift, The Odyssey and The Imposter.
There and Back by Trisha FitzGerald-Petri is a riveting, fascinating and wild ride. Picture yourself sitting on a couch with a friend, listening to an entertaining, complex and dramatic saga. Gwen’s story, told directly to the reader is enchanting, the wit and honesty refreshing. Readers will be captivated by Tessie’s journey and find themselves rushing to the end of the story to find out what happens next. It is a story of love between sisters, a family bond that can never be broken. Trisha FitzGerald-Petri is an outstanding writer with a fresh voice and enormous creative literary skills. She has penned an outstanding novel that held my attention from the very first sentence to the last word.
Suzanne M Hurley, Author
In her charming Irish voice, multi-published author, Trisha FitzGerald-Petri, has produced a saucy family suspense about three Sullivan sisters who grow up in a family that sticks together, no matter what. Sisters Gwendolyn and Anna are always balancing their own lives, against trying to save their impulsive younger sister, Tessie, from her romantic misadventures. There And Back is an exciting story of international, romantic intrigue and a once in a lifetime encounter that is never quite lost from the heart.
Conger Books Reviews
There and Back by Trisha FitzGerald-Petri is inventive, funny, painful and sexy. It is about two sisters’ adventurous relationship which is bonded through a heady mixture of love and suspense—both with a dash of international flavor. This book is in part Irish “Lolita meets Yugoslavian James Bond”. Tessie gets into a heap of trouble with life and men, but Gwen comes to the rescue, facing geographical hurdles, a political crisis, and reinventing what it means to be an older sister while confronting a storm of emotional woes of her own.
All fun aside, There and Back is not only a search for self-expression, but also self-worth—and what better way to do it than by adding a little bit of danger to shake the status quo of life.