Friday, May 23, 2014

The Traitor's Wife - Review

The Traitor's Wife: The Woman Behind Benedict Arnold and the Plan to Betray AmericaThe Traitor's Wife: The Woman Behind Benedict Arnold and the Plan to Betray America by Allison Pataki
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Published February 11th 2014 by Howard Books

A riveting historical novel about Peggy Shippen Arnold, the cunning wife of Benedict Arnold and mastermind behind America’s most infamous act of treason ...

Everyone knows Benedict Arnold—the Revolutionary War general who betrayed America and fled to the British—as history’s most notorious turncoat. Many know Arnold’s co-conspirator, Major John AndrĂ©, who was apprehended with Arnold’s documents in his boots and hanged at the orders of General George Washington. But few know of the integral third character in the plot: a charming young woman who not only contributed to the betrayal but orchestrated it.

Socialite Peggy Shippen is half Benedict Arnold’s age when she seduces the war hero during his stint as military commander of Philadelphia. Blinded by his young bride’s beauty and wit, Arnold does not realize that she harbors a secret: loyalty to the British. Nor does he know that she hides a past romance with the handsome British spy John AndrĂ©. Peggy watches as her husband, crippled from battle wounds and in debt from years of service to the colonies, grows ever more disillusioned with his hero, Washington, and the American cause. Together with her former love and her disaffected husband, Peggy hatches the plot to deliver West Point to the British and, in exchange, win fame and fortune for herself and Arnold.

Told from the perspective of Peggy’s maid, whose faith in the new nation inspires her to intervene in her mistress’s affairs even when it could cost her everything, The Traitor’s Wife brings these infamous figures to life, illuminating the sordid details and the love triangle that nearly destroyed the American fight for freedom.

Meet the revolutionary war era Scarlett O'Hara, yes this thought mainly came to me because one day while reading I had Gone With The Wind playing in the background. But I did see a lot of Scarlett in Peggy Shippen.

Yes, Scarlett is a bit of a brat but she's still pretty awesome when it comes to getting what she wants.
Face it that's the character everyone loves.
Or at least love to hate.

As much as I love history I have to admit I don't spend too much time with the American Revolution (or really anything American history pre-1900's.) So this was a bit new to me.
In the fictional sense, I am familiar with the American Revolution, my eight grade history teacher made sure of that.

This story is so well written that I would forget that it is fiction. And it definitely left me curious to know more about these people and there actual role in our history.
Peggy is really given life in this novel and at times I couldn't help but feel like a fly on the wall in her world.

The story grabbed me from the first page and didn't let me go until the very end. The main character Clara is the perfect third person needed to tell such an important story of this country's history and of such a character as Peggy Shippen.

It left me not only wanting to know more about this moment in history but also looking forward to more books by this author.

The Traitor's Wife is currently on sale for 1.99 now until Sunday (May 25th)!

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