Blinded by his young bride's beauty and wit, Benedict Arnold doesn't realize that Peggy is harboring a secret that will shape history---she's loyal to the British crown! Her maid, Clara Bell, believes in the revolution, but when she discovers her mistress's plot to deliver West Point to the British, can she muster the courage to intervene?
A riveting historical novel about Peggy Shippen Arnold, the cunning wife of Benedict Arnold and mastermind behind America’s most infamous act of treason . . .
Everyone knows Benedict Arnold—the Revolutionary War general who betrayed America and fled to the British—as history’s most notorious turncoat. Many know Arnold’s co-conspirator, Major John André, who was apprehended with Arnold’s documents in his boots and hanged at the orders of General George Washington. But few know of the integral third character in the plot: a charming young woman who not only contributed to the betrayal but orchestrated it.
Socialite Peggy Shippen is half Benedict Arnold’s age when she seduces the war hero during his stint as military commander of Philadelphia. Blinded by his young bride’s beauty and wit, Arnold does not realize that she harbors a secret: loyalty to the British. Nor does he know that she hides a past romance with the handsome British spy John André. Peggy watches as her husband, crippled from battle wounds and in debt from years of service to the colonies, grows ever more disillusioned with his hero, Washington, and the American cause. Together with her former love and her disaffected husband, Peggy hatches the plot to deliver West Point to the British and, in exchange, win fame and fortune for herself and Arnold.
Told from the perspective of Peggy’s maid, whose faith in the new nation inspires her to intervene in her mistress’s affairs even when it could cost her everything, The Traitor’s Wife brings these infamous figures to life, illuminating the sordid details and the love triangle that nearly destroyed the American fight for freedom.
Allison Pataki is the New York Times bestselling author of The Traitors Wife and The Accidental Empress. She graduated Cum Laude from Yale University with a major in English and spent several years writing for TV and online news outlets. The daughter of former New York State Governor George E. Pataki, Allison is a regular contributor to Huffington Post and FoxNews.com, as well as a member of The Historical Novel Society. Allison lives in Chicago with her husband. To learn more and connect with Allison visit AllisonPataki.com or on Twitter @AllisonPataki.
“A most impressive debut.”
“One of the best, best, best historical novels, I was riveted…I couldn’t put it down."
"Pataki smoothly weaves intrigue and personality with critical historical facts...Historical fiction lovers will look forward to more from this promising new novelist."
“A well-balanced narrative… events offers fresh perspective, plenty of intrigue and a host of interesting, multidimensional characters."
"If you read one book this year, make it Allison Pataki's THE TRAITOR'S WIFE. Few authors have taken on America's Revolutionary War so convincingly, and this story of Benedict Arnold's wife will appeal to lovers of historical fiction everywhere. Highly, highly recommended!"
"Allison Pataki's captivating debut novel examines history’s most famous tale of treachery through a woman's eyes. Meticulously written and well-researched, this story will transport you back to the American Revolution and keep you turning pages with both its intrigue and love story. The Traitor's Wife is a well-told tale."
"I consider this to be the debut of a major writer of historical fiction."
"The Traitor's Wife is a gripping novel steeped in compelling historical detail. Pataki writes lyrically and succeeds in bringing to life, and humanizing, notorious characters from our nation's past. Ultimately a story about honor and heart, readers will have a hard time putting this book down."
Allison Pataki has given us a great gift: a powerful story of love and betrayal, drawn straight from the swiftly beating heart of the American Revolution. Replete with compelling characters, richly realized settings, a sweeping plot, and a heroine who comes to feel like a dear, familiar friend, The Traitor's Wife is sure to delight readers of romance and lovers of history alike.
"Everything the casual reader of American history thinks they know about Benedict Arnold will be handily upset by the skillful and mesmerizing storytelling of fiction newcomer Allison Pataki. This text is a treasure and a treat."
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