NYT bestselling author, Jennifer Chiaverini pens the famed Elm Creek Quilts series and currently writes fascinating perspectives on Mrs. Abraham Lincoln. Her original quilt designs have been featured in several quilting magazines and her short stories have appeared in Quiltmaker and Quilters Newsletter. She has taught writing at Penn State and Edgewood College and designs the Elm Creek Quilts fabric lines. A graduate of Notre Dame and the University of Chicago, Jennifer lives in Wisconsin, with her husband and two sons.
When Mary Todd Lincoln locks horns with equally formidable red-haired "first-lady-in-waiting" Kate Chase Sprague, who will prevail? Determined to help her father, Secretary of the Treasury Salmon Chase, unseat President Lincoln, Kate brings all her gifts to bear. She and Mrs. Lincoln share many resources: beauty, brains, abolitionist ideals---and the same dressmaker. Who will outshine whom?
In March 1861, Mrs. Lincoln chose Keckley from among a number of applicants to be her personal "modiste," responsible not only for creating the First Lady's gowns, but also for dressing Mrs. Lincoln in the beautiful attire Keckley had fashioned. The relationship between the two women quickly evolved, as Keckley was drawn into the intimate life of the Lincoln family, supporting Mary Todd Lincoln in the loss of first her son, and then her husband to the assassination that stunned the nation and the world.
Keckley saved scraps from the dozens of gowns she made for Mrs. Lincoln, eventually piecing together a tribute known as the Mary Todd Lincoln Quilt. She also saved memories, which she fashioned into a book, Behind the Scenes: Thirty Years a Slave and Four Years in the White House. Upon its publication, Keckley's memoir created a scandal that compelled Mary Todd Lincoln to sever all ties with her, but in the decades since, Keckley's story has languished in the archives.
Born into southern aristocracy yet loyal to Lincoln, Elizabeth Van Lew had an innate skill for gathering military intelligence during the Civil War. Her covert spy ring was vast and her methods ingenious, but what did it ultimately cost her? Meticulously researched, Chiaverini's historical novel reveals Elizabeth's riveting story---of espionage, danger, and bravery!