by James Kahn


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In the U.S. Civil War, by 1862 the Union had blockaded all Confederate ports. Just across the Rio Grande from Brownsville, Texas, Matamoros was the only harbor where the South could ship its cotton to Europe, and smuggle in arms for the rebellion. So it was a haven for Yankee and Rebel spies and diplomats, gunrunners and cotton smugglers, runaway slaves, bandits, Texas Rangers, and rogues of every stripe.

But Matamoros was also full of French Foreign Legionnaires – because that same year, Napoleon III had invaded Mexico, to install Archduke Maximilian of Austria as Emperor.

Set against the backdrop of two wars, this is the story of Clay – an expatriate Southern gentleman running a gambling hall – and Allie, his ex-con artist partner, bringing her cotton train to market – in a star-crossed affair that may or may not survive their conflicted allegiances amidst the tides of battle.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781734274905
Publisher: James Kahn
Publication date: 12/20/2019
Pages: 442
Sales rank: 1,150,242
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.98(d)

About the Author

James Kahn is an Emergency Room physician who trained at the University of Chicago and UCLA. He's also written numerous sci-fi novels and novelizations, including the New York Times #1 bestseller, Return of the Jedi. He was, additionally, a television writer-producer for Melrose Place, Star Trek: Voyager, and numerous other series. In recent years he's been more focused on writing/producing CDs of Americana music - folk, blues and country.

Most recently his writing has taken a new turn. He spent years researching a little known corner of the American Civil War, and has just finished writing a historical novel about it - Matamoros, the Mexican town on the Rio Grande just across the border from Brownsville, Texas. In 1863, Matamoros was a haven for Yankee and Rebel spies, gunrunners, cotton smugglers, Texas Rangers - and French Foreign Legionnaires, since Napoleon III had just invaded Mexico, intent on installing Archduke Maximilian of Austria as its Emperor. This book is the story of Clay, an expatriate Southern gentleman, and Allie, his ex-con artist partner, embroiled in a star-crossed affair in the shadow or two wars.

In addition to the novel, Kahn has produced a companion CD of songs, each track about one of the characters in the book, detailing backstories and futures, and deepening understanding of the inner lives of the characters, in the American folksong tradition.

James Kahn lives in California and lives with his wife, artist Jill Littlewood. More may be gleaned at

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