A Passel of Trouble

The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning

Fiction - Historical - Personage
432 Pages
Reviewed on 01/29/2017
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Christian Sia for Readers' Favorite

A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning by Joe Epley is a stunning work on a historical personage, a story that captures in vivid and compelling language some facts about the American Revolution that have often been ignored by most American writers. Set against the revolutionary atmosphere in the Carolinas around 1775, the story follows a hero of the Revolution from "the other side," the nineteen-year-old loyalist Sergeant David Fanning, who became colonel after the first battle of the Revolution. Readers follow the career of a rugged boy who successfully evades numerous arrests and detentions, causes a lot of havoc on the enemy side, and manages to capture a governor and 200 soldiers. But this isn't just a story about Fanning as the author introduces an unusual character with a way of life that is contrary to everything Fanning stands for; Josh the Quaker.

Joe Epley is a terrific writer and he has the uncanny ability to help readers relive the experience of the Revolutionary War as though they were part of it. The descriptions are keen and compelling. One feels that it's a story that is well-researched as one delves into the way the protagonist is explored, the cultural tenets, and the general climate of the war. There is a powerful kind of conflict developed throughout the story and, apart from the pressure and concerns of war, the protagonist has to deal with friends who do not think the way he does. Readers will enjoy the courage and patriotism of Fanning, his unwavering zeal, his intelligence and wit, but above all, they will be seeing the American Revolutionary War from the other side of the fence. A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning is a compelling historical read with a lot of entertainment. It's a must-read for fans of the genre. Fanning plays out powerfully for a movie character. A book with a unique perspective.

Tracy A. Fischer

In an excellently written and amazingly researched new work of historical fiction by author Joe Epley, A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning, readers will find a wonderful novel full of adventure, intrigue and historical details about a person they may not have heard of before. Follow the story of 19-year-old David Fanning, a Loyalist sergeant in the Revolutionary War, as he and his Quaker friend, Josh, allies in the attempt to keep the King's rule the law of the land in the Carolinas, even if they are philosophical opposites. The story follows the duo all the way from 1775 until 1782 and details some of the most bold and interesting battles you may never have heard of, as well as the history of the Quaker influence in the Revolutionary War.

I loved A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning. Loved. It. How's that for a review? Well, it is absolutely how I felt about this work by the incredibly talented author, Joe Epley. His readers will find his characters easy to relate to, connect with, and care about. If that isn't a hallmark of a great author, I'm not sure what is. His attention to historical detail and his scene setting abilities are simply second to none. Any reader who enjoys historical fiction, or any reader looking for a great read of fiction in general, should absolutely grab this book. I am so pleased to highly recommend A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning, and look forward to reading more from author Joe Epley as soon as I possibly can!

Gisela Dixon

A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning by Joe Epley is a fictional historical novel about the life and exploits of David Fanning, one of the well known Loyalist leaders in the Revolutionary War in America. A Passel of Trouble has been very well researched and begins with an account of David’s youth and early years. Being a Loyalist, David fought for Britain at the time in North and South Carolina and was involved in repeated fighting throughout that turbulent period in history. This story documents David’s early youth and joining the militia, his friendship with Quakers, their loyalty and influence on each other, and the slow rise of David’s abilities and reputation as he becomes known as one of the most efficient leaders for his daring and successful raids and ambushes during the period of the Revolutionary War from 1775-1783.

A Passel of Trouble: The Saga of Loyalist Partisan David Fanning by Joe Epley is an extremely well researched novel and the vivid scenes of battle paint a true picture of what life must have been like at that time. The issue of slavery and David’s ideas have been dealt with realistically. I also liked the narrative style that tells the story effortlessly and engagingly while taking the reader through the war itself. I also enjoyed the everyday scenes of family life and simple love that have been portrayed in a authentic manner. Overall, I was impressed with the in-depth research and story-telling in this novel, along with the detailed history of David Fanning himself. Fans of historical fiction will surely enjoy this book!