The Tory Widow

The Tory Widow

by Christine Blevins


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780425226018
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/07/2009
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 1,144,241
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.10(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Christine Blevins is a former graphic designer and historical fiction writer. She is the author of The Tory Widow, The Turning of Anne Merrick, and Midwife of the Blue Ridge. A graduate of the Harrington College of Design, she now lives in Illinois.

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The Tory Widow 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 15 reviews.
Gertt More than 1 year ago
The Tory Widow is the story of Anne Merrick and Jack Hampton and their struggles and growth, while remaining true to their beliefs, in turbulent New York City during the early years of the Revolutionary War. Regardless if you were a Loyalist (Tory)or a Patroit, your world was turned upside down, depending on who had control of the city; sometimes you need to befriend the enemy in order to help your cause or simply to survive. Full of adventure, history, romance and betrayal, with many interesting characters and heros, this a book that will hold your interest and is well worth reading. I hope that Christine Blevins is hard at work on a sequel that will take us along with Anne, Sally, Titus and Jack, on another adventure and reunite us with some lost friends.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The descriptions of revolutionary New York are excellent. They carry you back to that era and immerse you in it, letting the reader 'see' what it was really like through the eyes of people who were affected by the events occurring at that time. The characters are believable, drawing the reader into their world and allowing him/her to care about their plight.
harstan More than 1 year ago
In 1766 in New York Jack Hampton, excited to hear of the appeal of the Stamp Act, kisses Anne Peabody. Although she enjoyed the kiss, nothing can come of it. She has no say as her father Amos saves his failing Peabody Printshop and keeps his son from becoming someone else's apprentice by selling her. He negotiates a deal with NYC based super printer to the carriage crowd Peter Merrick forcing his daughter to marry his friend, a man his age. Living in New York, when he dies, Widow Merrick finds herself in dire straits. She takes over her late spouse's printing business, which spouts support to Tory causes in an attempt to make a living. However, in 1775, the Sons of Liberty destroy her press. Anne reopens as the Liberty Coffeehouse with one of the rebels who devastated her previous store Jack Hampton as her best customer. Having never been in love, Anne is stunned by her attraction to Jack; he believes he is falling for her based on the amount of coffee he consumes. This is a refreshing look at the early days of the American Revolution from the eyes of a young widow eking out a living. Anna owns the insightful story line with her courage to survive regardless of who controlled the city. Jack is a super patriot, but allows his zeal at times to hurt innocent people like Anna though he insists collateral damage is part of any freedom fight. Christine Blevins provides an engaging American Revolution romance that sub-genre fans who especially value historical tidbits and strong characterizations will relish. Harriet Klausner
yankeesfan1 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
The Tory Widow by Christine Blevins was a fun mix of historical fiction and romance. The main character, Anne Merrick, is easy to root for and I enjoyed the different perspective on the Revolutionary War. It was interesting to see it looked at by someone who, at least at the start, didn't care who won and was able to go whichever way the wind blew. I also found it quite impressive that the author added a bit at the end about what historical details were stretched or changed. A very good read.
LiterateHousewife on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Anne is married against her will to a much older man in order to create a business relationship between her husband and her father. Both men are printers and her husband's shop, with its Tory leanings, is in New York City. Her marriage brings her no joy outside of her son. Once he was born, she was seen as no more and no better than another servant. When smallpox takes both her husband and her son, Anne is forced to h take control of the print shop, its politics, and her own life in a volatile climate that ultimately leads to the Revolutionary War. She has no choice but succeed in order to ensure that she is never another man's pawn again.Living on your own for the first time with the added stress of running a business on your shoulders just after losing your son would be a daunting task for anyone. When you add that this business had ties to those with Tori political leanings through your ex-husband when the entire city is about to explode because of the conflict between the colonies and the crown makes matters that much more perilous. What keeps Anne moving forward is the fact that her father talked about marrying her off to another printer almost immediately after she was widowed. As much as she grieves for her son, the loss of her family was mixed blessing for her because she has a level of freedom almost unheard of for the women of her day. With that freedom comes every bit of responsibility, too. She is now fully responsible for the product produced by the printing press. If those patriots seeking out justice against the Tories in their midst caught her supporting the Tori cause, her life, let alone her livelihood would be at risk. Anne's adaptations to her new life and the turbulent political climate made this novel enjoyable for me. I appreciated Anne's fortitude and strength.Anne's growing relationship with Jack did not work as well for me. While I can see how one entering a loveless marriage can hang on to romantic notions, I never really could wrap myself around her overlooking and forgiving some of the abhorrent things that Jack did in the name of his country and liberty. Anne pointed out herself that he wasn't the man she thought he was during their brief first encounter. He did one particular thing to Anne out of spite during a raid of her print shop and never apologized for it. Jack's character, however, was true and believable. I have a hard time believing that Anne would not in some ways find him to be somewhat like her father in that he does what's best for him - in Jack's case his cause - without much consideration for others.In The Tory Widow, which is the first in what will be a trilogy about the Revolutionary War, Christine Blevins weaves a story of the early days of the Revolutionary War that is well researched and interesting. The details in this novel are wonderful and I enjoyed reading about the workings of printing presses at the time my country was born. Although I enjoyed this novel, I liked The Midwife of the Blue Ridge better, I think this novel would really satisy those who are interested in the Revolutionary War, New York City, or early American politics. Blevins has a way of bringing early American history to life. I She puts more than just her time and energy into her novels. When you read about how copies of the Declaration of Independence were printed and distributed, you know that she puts her heart into each one.
DevourerOfBooks on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Anne was married off by her father to a well-off older man, a printer, in New York City and now, in 1775, she finds herself Widow Merrick, a woman trying to eke out a living from her late Tory husband¿s business in a turbulent time. After her press is destroyed by the Sons of Liberty and Jack Hampton she reopens as the Liberty Coffeehouse and eventually begins to fall for Jack, her ever-present customer.It was very interesting looking at the Revolutionary War through the eyes of a single woman trying make a living regardless of who was in control of the city. I liked Anne as a character, she was strong and courageous, but didn¿t seem out of place in her time period. I had a bit of trouble at first believing she¿d fall for Jack after a particularly bad stunt he pulled when Anne¿s press was being raided, but eventually his rakish attitude won me over (I had one other bit of difficulty with him near the end, but I liked him apart from that).Although Christine Blevins¿ stories have more of a romance aspect than I generally like in my historical fiction it works for me in her books for some reason. As much as I liked ¿Midwife of Blue Ridge,¿ I liked this one even better. If you like historical fiction/historical romance, this is a book to look into.
woodbear on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I enjoyed this book and I'm looking forward to reading the next two in this trilogy. I'd classify it more as historical romance/historical fiction light then true historical fiction. It's a nice mix of history and romance with very likable characters.
bwightman on LibraryThing 8 months ago
This book is the story of Anne Merrick, a widow living in New York City during the first few years of the American Revolution, while the city is occupied by the British army. Despite her one-time marriage to a dedicated Tory, and a printer, Anne discovers that her sentiments and heart lie with the patriots, and becomes a rebel spy dedicated to the cause.This is a wonderful story about a single woman in New York trying to go her own way during a time of upheaval and uncertainty, and the choices she must make in order to survive. I found the story both engaging and entertaining, and thought it to be a refreshing new perspective on a time period that's often written about, but seldom from a woman's perspective. A fantastic read, and highly recommended to anyone who loves historical fiction set during the American Revolution.
shootingstarr7 on LibraryThing 8 months ago
As a child, I read a fair amount of Revolution-themed historical fiction. It¿s been a long time since I¿ve read historical fiction centered specifically on the American Revolution, and reading The Tory Widow reminded me of all the things I love about historical fiction set in this era. Anne, Jack, and their friends were readable, likable characters, and the romance between Anne and Jack felt organic and real.I was concerned that the inclusion of real historical figures would seem forced and contrived, but thankfully Blevins chose to focus more on her characters, and the historical figures are peripheral. However, there was just enough historical fact to make me want to spend some time reading non-fiction and history about the period, which for me is always a huge selling point for historical fiction.Overall, I thought this was much better than Blevins¿ debut novel, Midwife of the Blue Ridge, which I read last year and liked but didn¿t love. I¿m very glad I gave her a second chance, and I¿d definitely recommend this book to fans of historical romance set during the Revolution.
ForeignCircus on LibraryThing 8 months ago
I really wanted to like this book, and it certainly had its moments, but overall I just couldn't get into the story. The best parts were the insights into life in Colonial New York, but the aggravating characters, insipid dialogue, and implausible coincidences made finishing this book a chore. The author's occasional efforts at period speech were stiff and added nothing to this already struggling narrative. The book was way too long, and then ended by setting up the obvious sequel, a tactic I generally find irritating as it undermines any sense of completion in the work. In this case, I was so glad to get to the last page, I didn't even care that much about the foreshadowing, especially as I have no plans to read more about these characters.All in all, the interactions between Jack and Anne read more like a teenaged romance than a serious work of historical fiction, and I couldn't see any real basis for their "relationship". I can see how this book would translate into a movie script because I suspect the big action scenes would play better on the screen than on the page. All in all, a disappointing read about an interesting period in U.S. history.
bachaney on LibraryThing 8 months ago
Christine Blevins' "The Tory Widow" opens 10 years before the revolution when Anne, a young woman, is getting married to a much older, and meaner, man. After her wedding, Jack Hampton a young printer kisses her spontaneously, causing Anne to fantasize about what her life could have been if she had been allowed to marry someone like Jack. Ten years later and Anne is a widow when she meets Jack again when he torments her for being a Tory. Anne soon becomes a Patriot, and along with the help of Jack and others, carries out espionage against the British during the occupation of New York. Will Anne and Jack be able to evade the British, or will their Patriot actions be foiled? Overall, I enjoyed reading "The Tory Widow" although I will admit that the book was uneven, and there were parts that I enjoyed more than others. I wish Blevins had stuck with telling the story from Anne's perspective, instead of switching between Anne and Jack. Blevins had a stronger voice and seemed like a better writer when writing from Anne's perspective. I got a little bored during Jack's sections, since I read the book because I wanted a woman's perspective, not a mans. I think Blevins did a lot of research, and her portrayal of the period feels accurate. I just would have preferred if she had stuck with a single perspective. If you are interested in the Revolutionary period, especially in New York City, I would recommend this book. It's a fun romance romp through the revolutionary period, just be warned if you don't like shifting narrators.
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