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Married for twenty years to Edward Berry, Lyddie is used to the trials of being a whaler's wife in the Cape Cod village of Satucket, Massachusetts—running their house herself during her husband's long absences at sea, living with the daily uncertainty that Edward will simply not return. And when her worst fear is realized, she finds herself doubly cursed. She is overwhelmed by grief, and her property and rights are now legally in the hands of her nearest male relative: her daughter's overbearing husband, whom Lyddie cannot abide. Lyddie decides to challenge both law and custom for control of her destiny, but she soon discovers the price of her bold "war" for personal freedom to be heartbreakingly dear.
Includes the fascinating "story behind the story" of The Widow's War, a map of colonial Brewster, and a driving tour of the village of Satucket.
“Merging historical fact with riveting fiction . . . This is historical fiction at its best; highly recommended.”
-Library Journal (starred review)
“Provocative . . . Gunning infuses the story with suspense and intrigue [and] resists easy generalizations and stereotypes.”
“Readers will be swiftly turning the pages, eagerly cheering for the strong-willed widow.”
“Heartrending ... Gunning’s vibrant portrayal of Lyddie’s journey shows that the pursuit of happiness is not for the faint of heart.”
“Gripping, romantic, historically sound, and completely satisfying...I’ll be surprised if I read a better historical novel this year.”
-Historical Novels Review (The Historical Novel Society); "Editor's Choice"