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Before the Darkness Falls

Before the Darkness Falls

4.5 4
by Eugenia Price

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Georgia, 1842. In this grand and passionate era of American history, forged by the dreams of extraordinary men and women, the McKay, Browning, and Stiles families find themselves experiencing love, hardship, and pain in the great Southern city of Savannah. The willful Natalie Browning Latimer’s newfound marital bliss has been threatened by a


Georgia, 1842. In this grand and passionate era of American history, forged by the dreams of extraordinary men and women, the McKay, Browning, and Stiles families find themselves experiencing love, hardship, and pain in the great Southern city of Savannah. The willful Natalie Browning Latimer’s newfound marital bliss has been threatened by a shattering loss, while the ambitious W. H. Stiles becomes wrapped up in a daring political trail that leads his family into the turmoil of Western Europe. Natalie’s brother Jonathan Browning shocks the family by dropping out of Yale to be with the one woman who could never be welcomed into Savannah society. As the families struggle to maintain their deep love for one another, the South struggles to justify its connection to the Union and moves toward succession.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“Romantic . . . entertaining . . . superb!” —The New York Times

“Eugenia Price is a name spoken with affection by millions of readers.” —Publishers Weekly

“Newcomers to Ms. Price's work should soon join her legions of faithful readers.” —Chattanooga Times

“An engrossing novel of antebellum America . . . richly detailed . . . unforgettable!” —Rave Reviews

“A charming and engaging picture of life in the South.” —Atlanta Journal Constitution

“Colorful . . . appealing . . . exquisitely detailed.” —Anniston Star

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Continuing her saga of the three antebellum Georgia families featured in Savannah and To See Your Face Again, Price again mixes history and romance fiction in her facile, highly sentimental style. Natalie and Burke Latimer experience the first tragedies of their married life on the north Georgia frontier; Natalie's brother Jonathan drops out of Yale to marry halfbreed Cherokee ``Indian Mary''; W. H. Stiles goes to Washington as a congressman and later, accompanied by Eliza Anne and the children, to Vienna as charge d'affaires; back in Savannah, the Brownings cope with Natalie's absence and their son's challenge to elite society; and doughty Eliza Mackay's beloved Captain Jack succumbs to tuberculosis. Meanwhile, the South is moving slowly toward secession, although Robert E. Lee, a close friend of the Mackay family, here expounds on the evils of slavery and the necessity of preserving the Union. While all of thecharacters (including children) indulge in the Southern propensity for flowery conversation, the best chapters are those in which politics and the slavery issue are discussed in lively fashion. Like the proverbial spoonful of sugar, Price's solid historical research is unobtrusively laced into the narrative to give readers a good understanding of the state of the nation in the years leading up to the Civil War, where Price will undoubtedly take us in the next volume of the Savannah Quartet. (October 1)
Library Journal
This third volume of Price's Savannah Quartet takes place in turbulent antebellum Georgia. The story revolves around the continuing hardships and joys of the McKay, Browning, and Stiles familiesreal people from Georgia's past. And they seem very real, with richly defined characters: Natalie Browning Burke, the young Savannah society belle who chooses life and love on the rough Georgia frontier; W.H. Stiles, agonizing between the political career he craves and the wife and family he adores; and Eliza McKay, wise matriarch of all three families on whom everyone depends. Though a bit too slow and melodramatic at times, the characters and the fine, historically accurate descriptions of Georgia will keep the reader involved until the end. Leslie A. Bleil, Western Michigan Univ. Lib., Kalamazoo

Product Details

Turner Publishing Company
Publication date:
Savannah Quartet Series , #3
Edition description:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 4.80(d)

Read an Excerpt

Branches barely clouded with late April green, the sour- wood, beech, maple and oak trees across her upcountry valley seemed to Natalie to be arranging the lavender morning around their trunks as though they had fingers and could lift mist and drape it to their liking.

Natalie’s own body, slender and lithe the first time she stood in this enchanted spot behind her cabin home Nearly three years ago, today leaned heavily against the old pignut hickory which stood guard over her iron soap kettle. She’d managed late yesterday to finish making the soap, in spite of a strange, dizzying weakness; in spite of the added weight within her, the oddly quiet, still weight of the child she would give to Burke in a little over six weeks.

Today, she meant to fill and store her cleaned, dried gourds with the lovely soap—gourds she’d proudly grown herself from seed. She loved living in this exact spot in the Georgia upcountry, beside the winding Etowah River. There was new life within her and her own life became new each time the sun rose from behind the nearest mountain. Every single thing she’d done in the years before she began to love Burke Latimer now seemed frivolous and without meaning. How had she endured the boredom of her girlhood years without hard work to do? One of her happiest memories from last fall was the evening spent with Buike scraping and cleaning the green- and-yellow-striped gourds. How they’d laughed and how proud he was of those gourds. He’d be proud of the new soap too. She could count on that.

“Burke,” she breathed, and felt comforted by speaking his name into the early-morning chill of their own backyard. Burke, her heart cried, you should be close by me now... but it’s all right that you’re not here. I always mean it when I tell you that. Day after tomorrow you will be here and Indian Mary will be back sleeping in her own cabin with her moon-eyed brother, Ben. I don’t really need Mary to stay with me anyway. I agreed just to humor you, Burke. You can’t help it because the church you and Ben are building is too far away for you to ride home at night. I’d be fine in our cabin alone. I’d be a lot better, in fact, than having Mary tipping around being so kind she gives me the creeps!

Natalie shivered in the crisp, new day, but found the lightly greening hills in the distance so familiar and safe—so hers and Burke’s—that she couldn’t bring herself to go inside.

Meet the Author

Eugenia Price (1916-1996) was a New York Times bestselling author of 39 books, with over 40 million copies sold. She is best known for her historical romantic antebellum novels.

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Before the Darkness Falls (Savannah Quartet Series #3) 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Love it
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I picked this up at a garage sale and have yet to read the first 2 in this quartet however I found the attention to historical detail fascinating. It has its' slow points, but I'm on my way to read the rest of the quartet now.