Gemma Jackson books in order
Gemma Jackson is an Irish author of historical fiction, historical mystery and historical thriller novels.
She has written book series such as Ivy Rose, Percy Place, and Krista's War.
Born in Dublin in a place popularly known as The Lane, which features in her debut novel Through Streets Broad and Narrow (2013), her writing is all about breathing life into the stories that she grew up listening to.
An Irish Nomad in every sense of the word, Gemma has traveled extensively and excessively.
From meeting royalty to dancing with movie stars and being homeless, life has been both affectionate and cruel to her. Nonetheless, Gemma has always managed to rise with a smile on her face, with her purple hair being a true depiction of finding happiness in the face of adversity.
Genres: Historical Fiction, Historical Mystery, Historical Thriller
- Her Revolution (2019)
- Through Streets Broad and Narrow (2013)
- Ha'Penny Chance (2014)
- The Ha'penny Place (2015)
- Ha'penny Schemes (2017)
- Krista's Escape (2020)
- Krista's Journey (2020)
- Krista's Choice (2020)
- Krista's Chance (2020)
- Krista's Dilemma (2021)
- Krista's Doubt (2021)
- Krista's Duty (2022)
- Krista's Deeds (2022)
- Impossible Dream (2018)
- Dare to Dream (2019)
- Cherish the Dream (2023)
Detailed book overview
Finn Brennan, the woman who has everything. Her handsome husband, a radio personality, is beloved of the women of Ireland. Her two gorgeous sons are making a name for themselves in films. She has a lavish house in Dublin. What does she have to complain about?
Finn eagerly anticipates her 40th birthday but spends the day alone and crying, forced to realize that she is literally a housewife. She has married a house! For over twenty years she has supported her husband in his career. She has raised two sons to manhood. She practically rebuilt the family home with her own sweat and labor. Her one escape is the garden workshop where she beats metal into fantasy figures.
The day after her birthday she resigns her position as wife and mother. Her husband and sons fight the change in their lives but she holds firm. She locks herself in her workshop. Her fantasy figures don’t care if she looks a mess and can’t stop crying.
Dare Lawrence, a wealthy Irishman living in America, discovers her secret world and wants some of it. He insists she puts a price on her figures, something Finn finds impossible to do. He shows her work to his friends in Hollywood.
After years of her husband demanding that she hide her ‘little hobby’ suddenly the world comes calling. They want what she has created.
On New Year’s Day 1925 Ivy Rose Murphy awakes to find her world changed forever. Her irresponsible Da is dead. She is grief-stricken and alone – but for the first time in her life free to please herself.
After her mother deserted the family, Ivy became the sole provider for her da and three brothers. Pushing a pram around the well-to-do areas of Dublin every day, she begged for the discards of the wealthy which she then turned into items she could sell around Dublin’s markets.
As she visits the morgue to pay her respects to her Da, a chance meeting introduces Ivy to a new world of money and privilege, her mother's world. Ivy is suddenly a woman on a mission to improve herself and her lot in life.
Jem Ryan is the owner of a livery near Ivy’s tenement. When an accident occurs in one of his carriages, leaving a young girl homeless, it is Ivy he turns to. With Jem and the people she meets in her travels around Dublin, Ivy begins to break out of the poverty-ridden world that is all she has ever known.
Ivy Rose Murphy dreams of a better future. For years she has set out daily from the tenements known as ‘The Lane’ to beg for discards from the homes of the wealthy – discards she turns into items to sell around the Dublin markets. And now she has grander schemes afoot.
But, as her fortunes take a turn for the better, there are eyes on Ivy – and she is vulnerable as she carries her earnings home through the dark winter streets. And, to add to her fears, a well-dressed stranger begins to stalk her.
Ann Marie Gannon, a wealthy young woman who has struck up an unlikely friendship with Ivy, wants to protect her. But will the stubborn woman she admires allow her to do so?
Jem Ryan, who owns the local livery, longs to make Ivy his wife, but she is reluctant to give up her fierce independence.
Then a sudden astonishing event turns Ivy’s world upside down. A dazzling future beckons and she must decide where her loyalties lie.
Through hard work and determination, Ivy Rose Murphy has come up in the world. She still begs for discards from the homes of the wealthy which lie only a stone’s throw from The Lane, the poverty-ridden tenements where she lives. These discards she repairs and sells around the Dublin markets.
But being in the ha’penny place may soon be a thing of the past for Ivy. She is fast turning herself into ‘Miss Ivy Rose’, successful businesswoman. With her talent for needlework and a team of neighborhood helpers, she has begun to supply an upmarket shop in Grafton Street with beautifully dressed dolls.
Her fiancé Jem’s livery business is going from strength to strength, and Emmy, the little girl Jem is raising, is thriving and happy.
Then Ivy’s wealthy friend Ann Marie Gannon, with her beloved camera, spends a day at the airport photographing planes.
Little does she know that her visit can destroy all Ivy’s hopes for the future.
In 1920’s inner-city Dublin tenements, Ivy Rose Murphy struggles to survive and thrive in the harsh poverty-stricken environment she was born into. She is trying to adapt to her new role as a married woman. There are those jealous of the improvements she has managed to make in her life. To Ivy it seems everyone wants a piece of her. She is stretched to breaking point.
Ivy’s old enemy Father Leary keeps a close watch on her comings and goings. She has attracted the attention of people willing to profit from the efforts of others. She needs help. Ivy’s friends gather around to offer support – but somehow Ivy is the one who gives hope to them.
Ivy’s husband, Jem Ryan, is a forward-thinking man. He is busy making a better life for the family he longs for – but can he protect Ivy when her enemies begin to close in?
1938 – Krista is living and working in the tiny village of Metz on the French-German border.
The world she has lived in all her life is changing. There is a feeling of oppression in the air. People no long stop to chat with their neighbors. Young men she grew up with are joining Hitler’s Youth – becoming disruptive bullies.
Then Krista overhears a conversation that will change her life. She must escape. Without a plan and with no time to think, she hides in the back of a car driven by an Englishman – and finds herself being driven through France into Belgium and finally sailing to Great Britain.
Will this new life be any better than the one she left behind?
Krista’s eyes are opened to the wider world around her. She sails to England in the company of her English teacher and a German aristocrat. She is frightened and unsure of her place in the world. What will become of her when she reaches England?
There are secrets revealed about Krista’s life – secrets she knows nothing about. She has people who care what happens to her. But because of the happenings in the world they cannot become involved in her life.
It is decided that Krista should work in the London home of Captain Caulfield, as a companion and assistant to Lia Caulfield and her twin sons. Will she be able to find her place in this strange new world?
Krista thought she would settle into her new life but the world had other ideas. Germany and Hitler are threatening war. No one can turn a blind eye to what is happening.
Her friend Perry, a young man injured in a horse riding accident, is bitter because he cannot fight for his country.
Krista becomes involved in a plan to remove children from danger zones in Europe. Her skill at languages will be much in demand. But is that all that will be demanded of her?
Perry and Krista are approached and asked to risk everything and travel into Germany. Are they brave enough to agree and survive what is asked of them?
Krista and Perry begin their perilous journey from England across Belgium and into Germany. They are posing as a rich young married couple. Can they pull off the ruse?
Initially their mission was to rescue a renowned scientist and his wife. The information the man holds is vital if Britain – as it is becoming more and more likely – joins the war.
Then everything changes, and their mission becomes more perilous than before.
The pair must rely on their wits and one another as they travel across a world being torn apart by the threat of war.
Krista and Perry arrive back in England from Germany. Perry is whisked away by the powers that be for debriefing. He has an important role to play. Krista is sent on her way with her new British passport in hand.
She is legally in Britain now. No one can make her do anything she doesn’t want to do. That doesn’t stop them trying. The shadowy figure of Mr Brown has her under observation. He wants to use her for his own purposes. He is not alone in wanting Krista under his control. Perry too has need of her skills. She stands firm, refusing to be used. She will not be controlled.
With the clouds of war continuing to gather over Europe, Krista returns to school. With shorthand, typing and her language skills, she hopes to find a well-paid position. She needs to make her own way in life.
Krista has completed her shorthand and typing course. She now has more opportunities available to her – or has she? With the constant threat of war in Europe shaking the nation, she is unsure of her future.
Too many people in the shadows appear to be paying attention to what she does. She can feel eyes upon her but has no idea whose. Is she under threat? Could it be the Grey Man? He has wanted to use her in the past – is he still of the same mind? Or are there others who wish to use her? What should she do?
Someone wants her cast adrift from the safe refuge she has found. They are willing and powerful enough to force the issue. Who and why? Krista must once again step out into the unknown.
War is coming! Britain struggles to prepare. Krista begins naval training with women determined to ‘do their bit’ for their country. The negative attitude of the naval men forces the women to close ranks. They are determined to succeed.
When Krista’s friend Perry appears on the base, Krista is pleased to see a friendly face but comes in for a great deal of teasing from the other women. Imagine, her friend is an admiral’s son!
On an evening out with Perry, Krista is shocked to find the man she was raised to believe was her brother, Philippe Dumas, working as a chef. What is he doing in England?
The world around Krista is constantly changing and all she can do is try to survive the shocks and surprises ahead of her. She has a duty to perform.
War has been declared. Men and Women from all over Britain are being conscripted. Krista and Perry are in the thick of it. Krista and her fellow Special Service Wrens are much in demand. There are no rules in place for what is demanded of them – they must just get on with the job at hand to the best of their abilities.
Krista is challenged like never before. She must find ways to accomplish what is asked of her. Who knew when she left France that she would be called upon to help in the protection of Britain? But it doesn’t matter now. She is in it for the duration. She will succeed or fail on her own merit. She is not alone: every citizen of Britain will be involved in the fight to survive.
In 1898 three young girls leave a Dublin orphanage to enter a life of domestic service. They are placed in the home of Captain Charles Whitmore but soon discover that the household is in turmoil. Charles, hoping to amass a fortune, is preparing to set off on a long sea voyage, deliberately leaving his wife Georgina almost penniless to fend for herself and the servants.
Georgina, who has been desperate to break free from a life of violent marital abuse, is relieved that he will be gone for some years, but nevertheless the future is frightening.
Then help comes from an unexpected quarter. An organization that helps women escape lives of abuse or genteel poverty makes Georgina an offer. They propose that her house should become a school designed to train such women to seek employment in the American West. The very idea is at once shocking and appealing.
Can Georgina step into the unknown and lead the women under her care into the future?
The orphan maids listen and wonder. Can they too dare to dream of a better life for themselves?
Georgina Corrigan is worried. The first women sent to her Percy Place home by the BOBs – an organization which supports women escaping difficult home lives – are ready to step out into the world again. Some have found opportunities in Dublin, others will travel across the sea to New York.
Will those travelling to America find employment with the Harvey Company? Thousands try every year to become Harvey Girls – young women who serve in restaurants and hotels set up to serve travelers on the Atchison, Topeka and Santa Fe railway line. Will they be successful when so many fail?
Meanwhile, at home complications multiply. Georgina is surprised when a strange young man appears, claiming the BOBs have sent him – but shocked when he reveals why. Then Flora Kilroy escapes a life of virtual slavery and appears on Georgina’s doorstep, claiming to be a relative. What can Georgina do? She is helping strangers – she can’t turn family away.
As the people who serve in the house struggle to meet the demands of each new arrival, Georgina wonders if she will ever know peace again.
The women of Percy Place greet each new day with fortitude. Failure is not an option. They are determined that they can, and will, not only survive but thrive.
Georgina Corrigan is dead! It must be true. It has been printed in the newspapers.
How does one prove one is not dead? Georgina is forced to seek assistance from her well-connected friends to establish that she is indeed alive and well and living in Percy Place.
The accident that caused the death of her unlamented husband Captain Charles Whitmore has had other ripple effects. The death of the Earl of Castlewellan in the same accident is also changing lives and a young woman is being forced to flee all that she knows.
With the death of her husband, Georgina is once more a wealthy woman. She no longer needs to open her house to strangers for money. But the BOBs, an organization that helps women escape difficult life situations, are relying on her to continue to do just that. How can she refuse?
Fortunately, her devoted friend Richard Wilson, Billy Flint and his crew, and the staunch women of her household are on hand to support her through all that life throws at her.