Historical Fiction published February 25, 2014
The Story Plant
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Synopsis from Goodreads:
Meet James Annesley, son of 18th Century Ireland. Though you may have never heard his name before, his story has already touched you in profound ways. Now, for the first time, novelist David Marlett brings that incredible story to life.
Stretching from the dirty streets of Ireland to the endless possibilities of Colonial America, from drama on the high seas with the Royal Navy to a life-and-death race across England and up the Scottish Highlands, from the prospect of a hangman’s noose to a fate decided in the halls of justice, FORTUNATE SON is a powerful, relentless epic. Here nobility, duels, love, courage, revenge, honor, and treachery among family, friends and ancient enemies abound. And at its center is the most momentous trial in Irish history – the trial of Annesley v. Anglesea from which our modern “attorney/client privilege” was forged, and our concept of a “jury of one's peers” was put to the test.
Carefully researched, vividly evoked, and lovingly brought to the page, FORTUNATE SON is an unforgettable work of fiction based on fact, one that will resonate deep within you long after you finish it.
This is one of those books that it took me a little bit to get into, but once I did I really quite enjoyed it. From what I gather this book is a work of fiction based on fact. The story part of it is fiction, but it's all based on true facts about the trial of Annesley v. Anglesea. The book contains pieces of actual testimony from the trial. It's all very interesting.
This is the story of James Annesley. His father was killed when he was only 12 or 13 and his uncle Richard wanted the Anglesea title so he claimed that James was not legitimate. Richard had his men put James on a ship and he was sold as an indentured servant in America. This is James story, it follows him from the streets of Ireland to America where he stayed in servitude for nearly 14 years. He finally makes his way back to Ireland where he fights to regain what is rightfully his in one of the biggest trials in Ireland's history. Along the way James becomes quite a fine man. Despite his situation he grows up to be a good man. He does have the good fortune to have a couple of good male role models as he is growing up. He also falls in love and is blessed to have a family of his own in the end. There is a nice little twist at the end that I didn't expect and that made the book even better for me.
Overall I really enjoyed the book. I would say the only thing that I didn't care for was how the accents were written and that's totally a personal thing. I think sometimes it makes the reading a little slower going when you have to wade through all the odd spellings and stuff. This is also why it took me a little longer to get into the book. Once I got used to it the reading went smoother.
I did really enjoy the characters and the history of the story. I liked the combination of fiction and non-fiction quite a lot. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes a good historical read.
*Disclaimer: I was provided with a copy of this book courtesy of the publisher in exchange for my honest review.*