Beaufort 1849

( 1 )

Overview

After years abroad, Jasper Wainwright returns to Beaufort, South Carolina, home of his unruly youth. Slavery and Sea Island cotton have made this summer seat of plantation owners one of the wealthiest and most cultured cities in America . . . and also the most hotheaded, secessionist city in the South.
Jasper's cousin, Henry Birch, wants him to marry his niece, Cara, a pianist and the prettiest girl in the county. Believing slavery doomed, Jasper has no desire to settle in the ...
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Beaufort 1849

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Overview

After years abroad, Jasper Wainwright returns to Beaufort, South Carolina, home of his unruly youth. Slavery and Sea Island cotton have made this summer seat of plantation owners one of the wealthiest and most cultured cities in America . . . and also the most hotheaded, secessionist city in the South.
Jasper's cousin, Henry Birch, wants him to marry his niece, Cara, a pianist and the prettiest girl in the county. Believing slavery doomed, Jasper has no desire to settle in the South again and so resists both Henry's matchmaking and his growing fascination with Cara. Then anonymous letters in The Charleston Courier give Jasper an inkling that maybe the South could change.
Though his freed slave, Jim, who travels with him, is antsy to leave, Jasper lingers in Beaufort. Amid a whirl of parties, waltzes and duels, Cara is never far from his eyes or his thoughts. As cries for secession grow louder, Jasper works desperately to convince Beaufort planters that gradual emancipation and transition to a wage-based economy could avert the coming storm of war. Will Beaufort be another Pompeii, its civilization disappearing in a cataclysm it refuses to foresee?
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this lively historical novel, set in Beaufort, S.C., at the apex of the town's antebellum period, prodigal son Jaspar Wainwright returns to his family plantation after 12 years abroad to educate his kin about the evils of slavery. When he left Beaufort for Harvard University and world travel, Jaspar was known as a hellion, savage drinker, and frequent duelist. Returning now—with an education and in the company of emancipated slave Spit Jim—to visit his cousin, Henry, at the lovely Villa D'Este, Jaspar is stunned that Henry's niece, Cara Randall, is no longer the child he remembers, but a poised, intelligent, self-taught young woman keen to expand her mind and horizons. Having rejected numerous local suitors, Cara has no intention of marrying, and Jaspar—widowed after a disastrous marriage—vows never to make the same mistake again. But both will be proven wrong, if the matchmaking Henry has his way. Cara is a singular, independent female in a culture of aristocratic entitlement, and she and Jaspar aim to change the town's brutal system of slavery and bigotry in their own, converging ways. Charged with subtle period detail and boasting fully developed characters, Allen's work is sharp, smart, and well focused.
Publisher's Weekly
"Charged with subtle period detail and boasting fully developed characters, Allen's work is sharp, smart, and well focused."
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780967178417
  • Publisher: Cabbages and Kings Press
  • Publication date: 1/31/2011
  • Pages: 306
  • Sales rank: 1,368,778
  • Product dimensions: 5.25 (w) x 8.00 (h) x 0.69 (d)

Meet the Author

Karen Lynn Allen studied English at Stanford University. She lives in San Francisco with her husband and children.
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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Posted June 25, 2014

    more from this reviewer

    I was rather disappointed with this book. The cover attracted me

    I was rather disappointed with this book. The cover attracted me right away and from the description I thought it would be something I would really enjoy. The reality was I really had a difficult time finishing it. I thought the plot was pretty weak and there were many holes in the story. The characters didn’t feel authentic to the time and place. I think I liked the idea of the story but the writing fell drastically short for me. My overall rating is 2.5 stars.

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