The Red Pearl
by Chloe Helton
Genre: Historical Fiction
“The Red Pearl is a delight. Meticulously researched, it transports the reader to the inns and backstreets of Boston in 1778. Lucy Finch’s personal tragedy spurs her on to take an active role in the revolutionary war, despite the immense danger it brings to herself, her family and friends. Ms. Helton’s characters are warm, living beings with gifts and flaws. Their relationships are altered — broken or strengthened — by the battles on distant fields and the evil of individuals closer to home.” – Carrie Bedford, Author of Nobilissima
There’s something peculiar about the small group of men who have begun to frequent The Red Pearl, the tavern that has hosted a variety of Boston’s men since before the Revolutionary War began. In a rebellious city that does not tolerate Loyalists, men could come here and speak freely without fear of the repercussions — and Jasper Finch, the tavern-keeper, has always been proud of that.
But now the war is in full force, and Lucy Finch — the tavern-keeper’s wife — is growing nervous about The Red Pearl’s most loyal customers. Their clandestine meetings and hushed whispers suggest dark secrets — secrets which may threaten the safety of Boston, and the future of the war itself.
Lucy struggles to stay loyal to her husband’s wishes while grappling with the surprising truths of America’s war for independence. When a terrible assault makes her ache for revenge, she must make a choice: Will she keep quiet about the explosive secrets she has learned, or will she expose them and risk her marriage and possibly her life?
Set in the wild and unpredictable world of the Revolutionary War, fans of historical fiction will fall in love with Lucy Finch, who faces impossible choices that may change the fate of a nation.
Read an Excerpt
“I came to tell you something to pass to your captain.”
“Information. Men talk, especially when they’re drinking in the tavern, and I’ve heard things that might be of interest.”
“Tavern gossip is not our concern, Lucy. It was good to see you.”
My lips pursed. Jonathan had never been the most friendly of us, but this was rude. “No. I paid fifteen pennies and took a whole day to come here, which my husband would have my hide for if he knew of, by the way, and I won’t let you pass me off. As your sister, I deserve to be listened to, at least.”
He looked away, then sighed. “I regret my rudeness. You may speak.”
Tempted to clench my jaw – you may speak, how patronizing of him – I launched into the story immediately, my enthusiasm spiralling with every word, and when I finished I glanced at him proudly, anticipating his astonished and impressed smile.
His fingers twitched. “Thank you,” he said flatly. “I’m sure it will be taken care of.”
That didn’t sound right. “You’re not going to do anything about it?”
There were a few other soldiers on the other side of the empty pit, and they perked up for a moment at my urgent tone.
“We get dozens of tips like this,” my brother informed me quietly. “The colonists never have a problem foiling British shipments.”
“You don’t understand. They’ve gotten away with it so far; they said they’ve never had a ship that didn’t pass through.”
He considered this. “Okay.” It wasn’t a rejection, but it wasn’t a promise, either. It was less than he would have given Thea, who had married a good patriot, whose first love had not been so wild as to scare our father into marrying her to someone so absurdly sensible as my husband.
“I promise you, I am speaking truth,” I told him. “I wouldn’t bring this to you if I didn’t believe it.”
Chloe Helton will be awarding $15 Amazon or Barnes and Noble GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour. Click here to enter!
Meet Chloe Helton
Chloe Helton is the author of four historical fiction novels, including And the Stars Wept and the Wattpad favorite A Thousand Eyes. Her readers have journeyed with her from the shores of Elizabethan England to the stormy battlefields of the Civil War in search of the often-hidden stories of women who made history.