May 11, 2021

The Turncoat’s Widow – A Revolutionary War Mystery

The Turncoat’s Widow

by Mally Becker

Published February 16, 2021
by Level Best Books

Rating: 4 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Genre: Historical Fiction | Mystery & Thrillers | Women’s Fiction

From the Publisher:

Set during the darkest days of the American Revolution, The Turncoat’s Widow tells the fictional story of General Washington’s most reluctant spy, a young widow who races times and traitors in New York City and Morristown circa 1780 to uncover a plot that threatens the new nation’s future. With elements of romance and suspense, this historical mystery also explores themes of resilience, loss, and the courage needed to leave the past behind.

My Thoughts:

Fun, fresh, and historical too – The Turncoat’s Widow is the perfect relaxing read!  I always appreciate when an author can skillfully combine meticulous, historical research with an easy-to-read, engaging format and that is exactly what Mally Becker has winningly accomplished with Turncoat.

It’s shortly after the American Revolution, in 1780, and recently widowed Rebecca Parcell is surprised to find that her deceased husband has been selling American secrets to the British who control the state nation of New York.  Drawn into the intrigue by none other than General George Washington himself, Parcell takes daring risks to track down the ring of spies with whom her husband was dealing.  Along the way she faces danger from multiple corners and romance with a rogue she’s not sure she can trust.

The kernel for the novel all started when Becker was volunteering at a national park in New Jersey and found herself sorting through the park’s archive of historical letters.  When Becker came across a copy of an indictment for the Revolutionary War-era crime of traveling from New Jersey to New York City “without permission or passport”, the spark that became Becker’s debut novel was born.

Such a short period time after the Revolution of 1776, the reader is reminded that not all during that historical period was cut and dry.  In one particularly lovely and poignant scene, Parcell muses, “After the balls of New York, the evening’s entertainment seemed almost quaint.  No, that wasn’t it.  The music here was more straightforward.  The guests laughed more easily.  The voices were louder.  We’re not British, she thought with surprise.  In all the flowery language about independence, she hadn’t heard anyone state what was obvious to her now.  They were not English.  They were American.”

This reviewer has heard rumors that there may be follow-up installments to Turncoat, and if so, let’s just say that we can’t wait for the next wild romp through the Revolution – looking forward to more, Ms. Becker!

A big thank you to Mally Becker, Level Best Books, and NetGalley for a complimentary Advanced Reader Copy of The Turncoat’s Widow in exchange for this honest review.

Get your copy of The Turncoat’s Widow today at Bookshop.org – the online bookstore that gives 75% of the book’s profits back to independent bookstores.

From the Publisher
About the Author:

Mally Becker is a writer whose historical suspense novel, The Turncoat’s Widow, published in February 2021 by Level Best Books.  She was born in Brooklyn and began her professional career in New York City as a publicist and freelance magazine writer, then moved on, becoming an attorney and, later, an advocate for children in foster care.

A winner of the Leon B. Burstein/MWA-NY Scholarship for Mystery Writing, Mally lives with her husband in the wilds of New Jersey where they hike, kayak, look forward to visits from their son, and poke around the region’s historical sites.

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