Ninth Daughter (Abigail Adams Series #1)

( 17 )

Overview

In the Massachusetts Colony, political upheaval turns murderous-a new series featuring First Lady Abigail Adams.

1773: The Massachusetts colony is torn between patriots who want independence from British rule and loyalists who support the King. At the center is the educated and beautiful Abigail Adams-wife of John Adams, the leader of the Sons of Liberty, a secret organization opposing the Crown.

When a murder occurs in the home of their friend...

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The Ninth Daughter

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Overview

In the Massachusetts Colony, political upheaval turns murderous-a new series featuring First Lady Abigail Adams.

1773: The Massachusetts colony is torn between patriots who want independence from British rule and loyalists who support the King. At the center is the educated and beautiful Abigail Adams-wife of John Adams, the leader of the Sons of Liberty, a secret organization opposing the Crown.

When a murder occurs in the home of their friend and fellow patriot, Rebecca Malvern, John is accused of the gruesome crime, which was seemingly perpetrated to obtain a secret Sons of Liberty document. With both her husband's good name and the fate of the Sons of Liberty at stake, Abby must uncover a conspiracy that could cost them all their freedom-and their lives.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
At the start of Hamilton's exceptional debut, set in Boston in 1773, Abigail Adams stumbles on an unknown woman's bloody corpse while paying a call on her friend and fellow patriot, Rebecca Malvern, who later goes missing. When it looks as if Abigail's irascible husband, John, may be accused of the murder, she sets out to clear his name. The trail takes her through the streets of colonial Boston and into the surrounding towns. Meanwhile, political unrest and opposition to the English crown grows. Working with both the Sons of Liberty and loyalists, Abigail bridges the gap between them as she investigates the murder and searches for Rebecca. While bringing to life such historical figures as Sam Adams and Paul Revere, Hamilton transports the reader to another time and place with close attention to matters like dress, menus and the monumental task of doing laundry. Historical fans will eagerly look forward to the next in this promising series. (Oct.)
Library Journal
In 1773 Boston, Abigail Adams finds a dead woman in her friend Rebecca's home and then realizes that Rebecca, too, is missing. The ship bearing the first of the controversial taxed tea from England is about to enter Boston Harbor, seditious patriots are agitating for freedom, and when her husband John is accused of the crime, Abigail launches a murder investigation more dangerous than she realizes. VERDICT Hamilton, a pseudonym of Barbara Hambly (known for her Benjamin January historicals), has just the right touch to guide the intelligent Abigail through the dangerous shoals of being a patriot while seeing the good side of the Colonies' English rulers. There are no missteps here in what should prove to be a captivating series for all historical fans. [See Prepub Mystery, LJ 6/1/09.]
Kirkus Reviews
Abigail Adams seeks justice for both the colonies and women. Boston in 1773 is no place for a woman alone, but Abigail knows Rebecca Malvern had to sew and edit rebellious pamphlets to make ends meet. Still, she's shocked to find Rebecca missing from her tiny quarters and a horribly mutilated corpse in her place. After Abigail sends for the Sons of Liberty, Sam Adams and Paul Revere scour Rebecca's house for every trace of sedition before alerting the Crown authorities. But their purge is not thorough enough. Redcoats show up at the Adams home, accusing John of murdering Perdita Pentyre, a wealthy merchant's wife. To find Rebecca and save John, Abigail inquires where only a goodwife could-among the servants and lady's maids. Scouring the countryside for Rebecca, she saves the Lieutenant of His Majesty's Guard from a band of irate patriots; he tells her that two common women were murdered the same brutal way last year. Is Perdita's murder also the work of a madman, or a calculated killing disguised as insanity? While tension mounts over tea in Boston Harbor, Abigail seeks the killer and her missing friend. Novels that re-imagine historical figures are a dangerous gambit, but the wry repartee between Abigail and John, together with the fact that this clandestine investigation of the murder of loose women would never have made the official record, make Hamilton's debut believable and gripping.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780425230770
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 9/29/2009
  • Series: Abigail Adams Series , #1
  • Edition description: Original
  • Pages: 368
  • Sales rank: 532,847
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 17 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 17 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 21, 2013

    Enjoyable, but...

    The historical background was interesting. I liked the character of Abigail Adams, but the idea that an 18th century wife and mother would be going around solving mysteries and putting her life in danger doesn't ring true. The book was an exciting read at the end, though.

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  • Posted March 26, 2011

    Wonderfully realized historical mystery!

    I loved Barbara Hamilton's historical novels, The Emancipator's Wife (about Mary Todd Lincoln) and Patriot Hearts, which was in many ways a seduction into the life of Abigail Adams. I'd read some of Adams's letters to her children, full of wit and wisdom, not to mention compassion and an intriguing perspective on the events surrounding the American Revolution and establishment of the United States. The Ninth Daughter, under the guise of a fictional murder mystery, offers as well a beautifully wrought, richly detailed vision of life in Colonial Boston. The plot itself involves not only the expected crime and politically motivated cover-up, spies and counter-spies, the legacy of Puritanism (the reference to the nine daughter of Eve, each more sinful than the first), the Sons of Liberty and the run-up to the Boston Tea Party, but the details of daily life and personal relationships that make the characters and their times truly come alive.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 12, 2010

    First in mystery series about Abigail Adams is engrossing read

    The Ninth Daughter by Barbara Hamilton is the first in a historical mystery series starring Abigail Adams. Abigail stumbles upon a brutal murder of a mysterious woman when she stops to visit her friend, Rebecca Malvern. Before alerting the watch to the death, she informs Sam Adams and the other Sons of Liberty because Rebecca was a contact within the organization. In the course of ensuring that the British authorities won't discover any information about the revolutionary group, they destroy much of the evidence. Abigail is so enraged at the idea of the murderer escaping justice that she starts investigating the crime herself, especially when she discovers that Rebecca has disappeared and may have fled the scene because she recognized the man. Perhaps he is a Son of Liberty, putting the entire group under suspicion. Abigail must work with a British lieutenant when her husband John is arrested for the crime. This murder may put the entire American cause in jeopardy. Hamilton has done her research about the life of Adams and fills the pages with many real people along with historical detail that brings 1774 Boston to life. Hamilton also portrays Adams remarkably well and by making the crime one that threatens friends and family makes her interference in the investigation realistic. Those familiar with Adams will be pleased by the portrayal, and those who aren't will be intrigued by this spunky, smart Founding Mother. I can't wait to read the next book in the series.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2009

    The Ninth Daughter is an excellent new book, especially for those interested in history and/or Abigail Adams (a truly amazing woman).

    Barbara Hamilton has done a marvelous job in writing this book. For those of you who are familiar with the letters of Abigail and John Adams, you will know that the author has done a remarkable job in recreating their relationship and background. And I don't think you necessarily need to be a student of history (though you may miss some inside jokes) to enjoy this book as the murder plot is unique and very suspenseful.

    Though at times the plot is a bit over-convoluted, even if I wasn't a fan of Abigail Adams I would have totally enjoyed this mystery. The author does a marvelous job of creating the surroundings and the characters. The murderer was very much a surprise, which is always a sign of an excellent mystery writer.

    I recommend this book and I myself eagerly await the next book in the Abigail Adams Mystery series.

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  • Posted August 23, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Barbara Hamilton writes a super Revolutionary War era Massachusetts Bay Colony amateur sleuth mystery

    In 1773, the Sons of Liberty demand representation in England's Parliament and a say in running the colonies that they consider a country. They are preventing a ship containing tea imported by the West Indian Company from unloading. Abigail Adams is at the periphery of the standoff as her spouse John is one of the leaders of the tea boycott. She visits her friend Rebecca Malvern, who tells her that her husband abuses her.

    Abigail finds a corpse of a woman on the kitchen floor. Before she goes for help, she notices Sons of Liberty items everywhere. John and his brother Sam arrive to clean up the mess; the victim is Perdita Pentyre married to a wealthy merchant and mistress to the colonial governor. Rebecca is missing and Abigail believes she has been abducted. She intends to find her friend as does Sam who believes Rebecca possesses a ledger containing the names of the Sons of Liberty in other colonies and the cipher which is used to communicate with them As her husband is accused of murder, her inquiry takes her into the worst sections of Boston where homicide is a daily activity.

    Barbara Hamilton writes a super Revolutionary War era Massachusetts Bay Colony amateur sleuth starring real historical figures who fans the flames of revolt two years before the "shot hear round the world" (Emerson's usage and not that of Bobby Thompson). The mystery is well crafted even though the audience knows John is obviously not the killer since this is not an alternate historical. The story line provides a deep look at Boston as rebellion is in the air. Fans will want to join the tea party hosted by Ms. Hamilton with guests being a who's who of Colonial Massachusetts.

    Harriet Klausner

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    Posted October 3, 2010

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