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?
The New York Times bestselling author of Mrs. Lincolns Dressmaker and Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule, Jennifer Chiaverini, reveals the famous First Ladys very public social and political contest with Kate Chase Sprague, memorialized as "one of the most remarkable women ever known to Washington society." (Providence Journal)
Kate Chase Sprague was born in 1840 in Cincinnati, Ohio, the second daughter to the second wife of a devout but ambitious lawyer. Her father, Salmon P. Chase, rose to prominence in the antebellum years and was appointed secretary of the treasury in Abraham Lincolns cabinet, while aspiring to even greater heights.
Beautiful, intelligent, regal, and entrancing, young Kate Chase stepped into the role of establishing her thrice-widowed father in Washington society and as a future presidential candidate. Her efforts were successful enough that The Washington Star declared her "the most brilliant woman of her day. None outshone her."
None, that is, but Mary Todd Lincoln. Though Mrs. Lincoln and her young rival held much in commonpolitical acumen, love of country, and a resolute determination to help the men they loved achieve greatnessthey could never be friends, for the success of one could come only at the expense of the other. When Kate Chase married William Sprague, the wealthy young governor of Rhode Island, it was widely regarded as the pinnacle of Washington society weddings. President Lincoln was in attendance. The First Lady was not.
Jennifer Chiaverini excels at chronicling the lives of extraordinary yet littleknown women through historical fiction. What she did for Elizabeth Keckley in Mrs. Lincolns Dressmaker and for Elizabeth Van Lew in The Spymistress she does for Kate Chase Sprague in Mrs. Lincolns Rival.
JENNIFER CHIAVERINI is the New York Times bestselling author of the Elm Creek Quilts series, The Spymistress, and Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker. She lives with her family in Madison, Wisconsin.
Praise for Mrs. Lincoln's Rival
"History is front and center here...this solid effort won't disappoint." - Booklist
Praise for Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker:
“Jennifer Chiaverini imagines the First Lady’s most private affairs through the eyes of an unlikely confidante.”
—Harper’s Bazaar on Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker
“History—and its colorful characters—come alive.”
—USA Today on Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker
—New York Post on Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker
“Any reader interested in President Lincoln, Civil War history, or historical fiction should love this book.”
—Bookreporter.com on Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker
“Taking readers through times of war and peace as seen through the eyes of an extraordinary woman, the author brings Civil War Washington to vivid life through her meticulously researched, authentic detail. Chiaverini’s characters are compelling and accurate; the reader truly feels drawn into the intimate scenes at the White House.”
—Library Journal on Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker