The Secrets of Mary Bowser
Based on a remarkable true story, The Secrets of Mary Bowser is an inspiring tale of one daring woman's willingness to sacrifice her own freedom to change the course of history All her life, Mary has been a slave to the wealthy Van Lew family of Richmond, Virginia. But when Bet, the willful Van... show more
Based on a remarkable true story, The Secrets of Mary Bowser is an inspiring tale of one daring woman's willingness to sacrifice her own freedom to change the course of history All her life, Mary has been a slave to the wealthy Van Lew family of Richmond, Virginia. But when Bet, the willful Van Lew daughter, decides to send Mary to Philadelphia to be educated, she must leave her family to seize her freedom. Life in the North brings new friendships, a courtship, and a far different education than Mary ever expected, one that leads her into the heart of the abolition movement. With the nation edging toward war, she defies Virginia law by returning to Richmond to care for her ailing father—and to fight for emancipation. Posing as a slave in the Confederate White House in order to spy on President Jefferson Davis, Mary deceives even those who are closest to her to aid the Union command. Just when it seems that all her courageous gambles to end slavery will pay off, Mary discovers that everything comes at a cost—even freedom.
Publish date: May 15th 2012
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Pages no: 453
Edition language: English
, Book Club
, Adult Fiction
, Historical Fiction
, African American
, American History
, 19th Century
, Spy Thriller
, Military History
, Civil War
, American Civil War
Lois Leveen’s notes at the end of the novel about the facts behind The Secrets of Mary Bowser are fascinating. Knowing where the line between fact and fiction lies in no way detracts from the story as oftentimes, the truth is more unbelievable than fiction. Mary was indeed as remarkable as the book ...
I received an ARC of "The Secrets of Mary Bowser" through BookBrowse's First Impressions program. I'm definitely in the minority, b/c most reviewers have given it 4+ stars. I found it very slow and boring; the characters just simply never came alive for me. I only made it to page 84 before giving...
At 450 pages, this is a satisfying brick of a novel. Rich with ambiance, filled with artfully articulated characters, and centered squarely in an era and locale that is vibrant, shocking, captivating, and real, The Secrets of Mary Bowser represents what I love about a good historical novel.Based in...
Mary Bowser was a real person, a freed slave who spied for the Union during the Civil War. She was highly educated, but played the "ignorant darky," posing as a slave in the home of Confederate president Jefferson Davis. Letting the white people believe she was illiterate allowed her access to the w...