TITLE: The Traitor's Wife: A NovelAUTHOR: Kathleen Kent
INFO: Paperback, Fiction, 296 pages
PUBLISHED: Little, Brown and Company, 2010
SOURCE: Received from Publisher for Review
FROM GOODREADS: In the harsh wilderness of colonial Massachusetts, Martha Allen works as a servant in her cousin's household, taking charge and locking wills with everyone. Thomas Carrier labors for the family and is known both for his immense strength and size and mysterious past. The two begin a courtship that suits their independent natures, with Thomas slowly revealing the story of his part in the English Civil War. But in the rugged new world they inhabit, danger is ever present, whether it be from the assassins sent from London to kill the executioner of Charles I or the wolves-in many forms-who hunt for blood. A love story and a tale of courage,
MY TAKE: One of the things other than the subject matter that drew me to this book is the fact that the author is actually a descendant of Martha Carrier. It always fascinates me when a family member is able to write a story about someone in their lineage ~ especially when that ancestor's tale is as volatile as this one.
This book started out with the title of "The Wolves of Andover" and has been changed to it's current "The Traitor's Wife". I think this was a smart move as the first title was a bit misleading since the wolves have just a bit part in the tale. Of course the new title pretty much gives a bit of the story away, but history buffs will know how the story goes anyway.
The Traitor's Wife is actually a prequel to Ms. Kent's blockbuster The Heretic's Daughter. Both are quite enjoyable as stand alone reads so there is really no need to have read the first book before this one. I think I'd actually prefer starting with The Traitor's Wife as it tells us how Martha and Thomas came to be. Since Heretic is told from their daughter Sarah's point of view, it works well in either order.
Kathleen Kent has a lovely way with words. She makes the reader feel right at home in 17th century England as well as Salem, Massachusetts. Her characters and dialogue reflect the time period and various locations well. Her writing shows the extensive research that she undertook. I would imagine the fact that this is a fictional account of her real-life ancestors makes this attention to detail even more crucial.
Fans of historical fiction as well as those who enjoy learning about the Salem witch trials should read this story. The familial tie of the author just adds to the interest of the book.
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