Saturday, December 30

Book Review: The Traitor's Wife by Allison Pataki

Author: Allison Pataki
Title: The Traitor's Wife
Genre: Historical Fiction
Format: Paperback
Pages: 496
Published: January 1, 2014
Where I Got It: My Shelf (Used Book Store)

A riveting historical novel about Peggy Shippen Arnold, the cunning wife of Benedict Arnold and mastermind behind America's most infamous act of treason . . .
Everyone knows Benedict Arnold--the Revolutionary War general who betrayed America and fled to the British--as history's most notorious turncoat. Many know Arnold's co-conspirator, Major John Andre, who was apprehended with Arnold's documents in his boots and hanged at the orders of General George Washington. But few know of the integral third character in the plot: a charming young woman who not only contributed to the betrayal but orchestrated it.

Socialite Peggy Shippen is half Benedict Arnold's age when she seduces the war hero during his stint as military commander of Philadelphia. Blinded by his young bride's beauty and wit, Arnold does not realize that she harbors a secret: loyalty to the British. Nor does he know that she hides a past romance with the handsome British spy John Andre. Peggy watches as her husband, crippled from battle wounds and in debt from years of service to the colonies, grows ever more disillusioned with his hero, Washington, and the American cause. Together with her former love and her disaffected husband, Peggy hatches the plot to deliver West Point to the British and, in exchange, win fame and fortune for herself and Arnold.

Told from the perspective of Peggy's maid, whose faith in the new nation inspires her to intervene in her mistress's affairs even when it could cost her everything, The Traitor's Wife brings these infamous figures to life, illuminating the sordid details and the love triangle that nearly destroyed the American fight for freedom.

Well.....last book of 2023. Wild that. 

This tale follows Clara who was the maid of the infamous Peggy who would go on to marry Benedict Arnold. Clara would go on to watch Peggy be seduced by John Andre, seducing Benedict, and then betraying the American cause. 

I simply LOVED that we see everything through Clara's eyes. After her grandma dies she is left with little options, but luckily she lands a job with Peggy and her family. It was interesting to see everything play out from this perspective. I even loved seeing Clara fall in love too. It was nice. wanted to slap the shit out of Peggy. She is a little brat and everyone was so charmed and fooled. It would've been fitting if she stayed with John....they are both charming snakes that people simply fell in love with. No spoiler here since it's history, even the jailers of John ended up feeling bad when they had to hang him. Wild, man...wild. Peggy was OBVIOUSLY a part of their plans, but she was able to charm Washington, Hamilton, and the rest, and the believed her stunts. However, what a wonderful villainous character to follow and watch. I truly feel the author did a wonderful job portraying this lady.

This was for sure a book I had a hard time putting down after the drama started. The beginning took a minute but you could tell all the pieces on the board were being set for some intrigue and drama. Yessssss as Kronk would say....

All-in-all what a nice way to ending my 2023 reading chapter. This was excellent and I enjoyed it. It had it, drama, intrigue, and hint of comedy (Peggy is ridiculous). 5 stars from me. 


- #12 TBR Pile Reading (yayy all done)


Sophia Rose said...

I've read another historical fiction from this author and it was good this one sounds even better. Glad you were able to slip it in for 2023.

Northwoman said...

I'm glad it was such a hit for you! Happy New Year.

Anne - Books of My Heart

Carole Rae said...

Sophia, I need to read more by her. She was goooood.

Anne, Happy New Year!

Blodeuedd said...

Excellent way to end the year

Carole Rae said...

Yesss a nice way to end the year.