Unlikely Allies is the story of three remarkable historical figures. Silas Deane was a Connecticut merchant and delegate to the Continental Congress as the American colonies struggled to break with England. Caron de Beaumarchais was a successful playwright who wrote The Barber of Seville and The Marriage of Figaro. And the flamboyant and mysterious Chevalier d'Eon - officer, diplomat, and sometime spy - was the talk of London and Paris. Is the Chevalier a man or a woman?
When Deane is sent to France to convince the French government to support the revolutionary cause, he enlists the help of Beaumarchais. Together, they successfully smuggle weapons, ammunition, and supplies to New England just in time for the crucial Battle of Saratoga, which turned the tide of the American Revolution. And the catalyst for Louis XVI's support of the Americans against England was the Chevalier d'Eon, whose decision to declare herself a woman helped to lead to the Franco-American alliance. These three people spin a fascinating web of political intrigue and international politics that stretches across oceans as they ricochet from Versailles to Georgian London to the Pennsylvania State House (now Independence Hall) in Philadelphia. Each man has his own reasons for wanting to see America triumph over the British, and each contends daily with the certainty that no one is what they seem. The line between friends and enemies is blurred, spies lurk in every corner, and the only way to survive is to trust no one.
An edge-of-your-seat story full of fascinating characters and lavish with period detail and sense of place, Unlikely Allies is Revolutionary history in all of its juicy, lurid glory.
©2009 Joel Richard Paul; (P)2009 Tantor
"A rollicking romp as well as a serious history, it reminds us of the role of duplicity, hypocrisy and corruption...in safeguarding the American Revolution." (William Taubman, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Khrushchev: The Man and His Era)
I am a history geek...so naturally I loved it. It kept me engaged the whole way through. It also integrated everything I learned in college and had all the historical rock stars that made it fun and familiar.
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