All I knew about Aaron Burr, before I picked up this novel, was that he was the person who shot Alexander Hamilton. Imagine my astonishment to be taken to Pondicherry, India in 1768 to meet 8-year-old Veena, who is sold into the Beauharnais family, given the name Eugenie and taken as a slave to Saint Domingue, where she is rescued by John Prevost, given the name Mary and given as a “present” to his wife Theodosia. By such roundabout means, Veena/Eugenie/Mary meets Aaron Burr, Theodosia’s second husband and becomes his mistress/secret wife.
This is a fascinating look at the complexities of life in the colonies, told through the eyes of a woman of color. Susan Holloway Scott displays great empathy for her character, and I loved her vivid characterizations of Burr, his wife and daughter (both called Theodosia) his servants, slaves and friends. Highly recommended. 5 stars.