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Raven's Bride

Crook, Elizabeth

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ISBN 10: 0385417756 / ISBN 13: 9780385417754
Published by Doubleday
Condition: Good Hardcover
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Bibliographic Details

Title: Raven's Bride

Publisher: Doubleday

Binding: Hardcover

Book Condition:Good

About this title


In 1829, Sam Houston was the thirty-six-year-old governor of Tennessee, and his political horizons seemed limitless. The marriage of this charismatic, ambitious statesman to twenty-year-old Eliza Allen, the daughter of a prominent land-holder, seemed to form the perfect social foundation on which Houston would build his glittering career. But just eleven weeks after the wedding, Eliza suddenly and inexplicably left her new husband, creating a scandal that caused the governor to resign his office in disgrace and embark on an exile that would ultimately deliver him to Texas, and a destiny even grander and more improbable than anyone could have imagined. Through decades of rumor and speculation, Sam Houston and Eliza Allen never revealed the source of their unhappiness, and carried the secret with them to their graves. The Raven's Bride is a brilliantly original novel that unravels this dark romantic mystery while illuminating a vivid and fascinating moment in America's past. In these pages, Sam Houston is presented as he must have been--a heroic figure (called "The Raven" by the Cherokee), vain, flamboyant, magnetic, his outsized personality fueled by a desparate need for love. And Eliza Allen is his match: a prideful, magnificent young woman, both drawn to and disturbed by her husband's grand aspirations. With the investigative acuity of a historian and the profound empathy of a gifted novelist, Elizabeth Crook has created an enthralling portrait of these star-crossed lovers and the vibrant, restless world that brought them together. Richly detailed and splendidly imagined, The Ravens Bride turns a baffling historical conundrum into a complex and deeply affecting love story.

From Publishers Weekly:

Crook's intricate first novel engagingly details the abrupt dissolution of Sam Houston's 11-week marriage to Eliza Allen in 1829, an event that caused lingering scandal and speculation. Sam, governor of Tennessee at 36, is portrayed as a heavy-drinking womanizer, egotistical, ambitious and confident that his destiny lies west, in Texas. He is smitten with teenage Eliza, sensuous and defiant despite a strict upbringing by wealthy parents. As she describes Sam and Eliza's complex and ambivalent relationship, Crook weaves an intricate story that reveals Eliza's lies and half-truths about an earlier love affair, a liaison that grates against Sam's inflexible moral code, which is riddled with double standards. Eliza herself is deeply disturbed by Houston's duplicity in keeping his political plans secret from her. The couple's emotional turmoil is maintained at high pitch by the interaction of a rich cast of characters, including the fiery general Andrew Jackson; a number of Sam's rowdy friends; and Will Tyree, Eliza's doomed lover. A surfeit of talk, endless self-analysis, and several superfluous anticlimactic chapters create tedious moments, yet this well-researched historical romance manages to capture some towering personalities at a pivotal moment in history.
Copyright 1990 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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