Back in the Old Country to find out why his late grandparents left after the Troubles, insisting they could never return, Dermot Michael Coyne, retired from the Chicago commodities trading floor on a bit of Irish luck, runs headlong into fetching student Nuala Anne McGrail, reason enough to remain on the island forever. But Dermot won't succumb to his desire for Nuala, though he keeps her close by asking her to translate his grandmother's diaries. Nuala will need to work from a photocopy, though, since someone's stolen the diaries and the yellowed sheaf of clippings Nell Pat O'Riada left behind -- clippings that suggest Nell Pat knew who killed Irish patriot Michael Collins and Daniel O'Kelly, commander of the Galway brigade, back in 1922. As Dermot and Nuala float through a lilting, tumescent present interrupted by periodic attacks by local bullyboys and veiled threats by their well-placed masters, excerpts from Nuala's translation unfold the parallel love story of Nell Pat and Dermot's grandfather, Liam O'Riada -- and hint at the location of a treasure in Irish gold missing since the Easter Uprising in 1916. More romance than mystery, with Nell Pat's intermittent account of Civil War intrigue (complete with unconvincing celebrity killer) eclipsed by the mating dance of Nuala and Dermot. The would-be lovers may be less cloying back in Chicago, where Greeley (Sacraments of Love, 1993, etc.) promises to send them for a new series.