Though a lyrical writer, Dobson unwisely focuses on the wrong heroine: milksop heiress Lydia Caswell who, at the mature age of 24, holds no strong views on the American Revolution until its final months. Readers would have been better served with the story of Lydia’s courageous friend Sarah, who runs her father’s plantation alone while maintaining a double life as a Patriot spy.

Lydia Caswell just wants the Revolutionary War to end and doesn’t much care who wins. Weary of the violence and the rapacious British officers billeted in her stately home, she risks her life to rescue a drowning man from the river running through her Loyalist father’s plantation. The man is Nathan Lewis, a dashing courier and spy for General Washington. Nathan enlists Lydia to deliver information to the Continental Army, enmeshing her in a network of spies that includes not only Lydia’s best friend Sarah, but also the most ardent Loyalists in Virginia. (Summerside, Sep., 336 pp., $14.99)

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Reviewed by: 
Carolyn Buscarino