"The Red Pearl is a delight. Meticulously researched, it transports the reader to the inns and backstreets of Boston in 1778. Lucy Finch’s personal tragedy spurs her on to take an active role in the revolutionary war, despite the immense danger it brings to herself, her family and friends. Ms. Helton’s characters are warm, living beings with gifts and flaws. Their relationships are altered — broken or strengthened — by the battles on distant fields and the evil of individuals closer to home." - Carrie Bedford, Author of Nobilissima
There’s something peculiar about the small group of men who have begun to frequent The Red Pearl, the tavern that has hosted a variety of Boston’s men since before the Revolutionary War began. In a rebellious city that does not tolerate Loyalists, men could come here and speak freely without fear of the repercussions -- and Jasper Finch, the tavern-keeper, has always been proud of that.
But now the war is in full force, and Lucy Finch -- the tavern-keeper’s wife -- is growing nervous about The Red Pearl’s most loyal customers. Their clandestine meetings and hushed whispers suggest dark secrets -- secrets which may threaten the safety of Boston, and the future of the war itself.
Lucy struggles to stay loyal to her husband’s wishes while grappling with the surprising truths of America’s war for independence. When a terrible assault makes her ache for revenge, she must make a choice: Will she keep quiet about the explosive secrets she has learned, or will she expose them and risk her marriage and possibly her life?
Set in the wild and unpredictable world of the Revolutionary War, fans of historical fiction will fall in love with Lucy Finch, who faces impossible choices that may change the fate of a nation.
When I started to move, Jasper mumbled something. He wasn’t much of an early riser, but the sun was splashing through the windows now and we couldn’t let the guests wake before us. It had become my responsibility to make sure of that. “Up,” I urged, nudging his shoulder. “Imagine if Robby gets in the kitchen before we do.”
Now he blinked. Robby, our hired boy, was an honest worker, but he was useless without direct and clear orders. If he tried fiddling with the pots and pans without my direction, they’d all be broken before we even made it downstairs. “Didn’t we just fall asleep?” he groaned.
“Oh, enough. You’re terrible in the morning.”
“Come back down,” he said, wrapping an arm around my waist to pull me. “Lay next to me just a minute longer.”
I couldn’t have resisted, really, even if I wanted to. He was too strong. I brushed a hand through his clipped black hair. There had been days when I yearned for another kind of man, shaggy blonde hair and sharp blue eyes, but although he crossed my mind every day, almost, he was now little more than a ghost swirling in the morning fog. I was here with Jasper, who was dark and quiet and excruciatingly clean-shaven. There was drink to brew and mouths to feed here and I wasn’t a girl anymore.
“Jasper,” I said. I hadn’t been planning to mention this, but he was the one who pulled me back down to bed. “Are you planning to let those Tory meetings go on long?”
“What d’you mean?” he mumbled, his eyes barely open. “If they pay for it, they can have their meetings. And you shouldn’t call them that.”
About the author:
Chloe Helton is the author of four historical fiction novels, including And the Stars Wept and the Wattpad favorite A Thousand Eyes. Her readers have journeyed with her from the shores of Elizabethan England to the stormy battlefields of the Civil War in search of the often-hidden stories of women who made history.
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