In Liberty's Wake

A Novel of British America

Fiction - Historical - Event/Era
Kindle Edition
Reviewed on 09/26/2015
Buy on Amazon

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Author Biography

Alexandra Norland has been interested in eighteenth-century American and British history since childhood. She has a B.A. in English, is an avid reader, and enjoys reading a mix of fiction and nonfiction—especially history, biographies, and travelogues. Prior to becoming a writer she worked in retail, banking, and later as a reference librarian associate. She currently lives in North Carolina.

    Book Review

Reviewed by Chris Fischer for Readers' Favorite

Wow! Just wow! How's that for a review? I just finished reading the beautiful new work of historical fiction by debut author Alexandra Norland, In Liberty's Wake: A Novel of British America. Follow the story of Arabella Alden, a privileged young woman in the British Colonial times in the Americas. Times are precarious, and change is afoot, as the American Revolutionaries are stirring and freedom is the word on everyone's lips. The Alden family's lives, and the lives of their slaves, are sure to change, and not everyone is ready. While the Alden family professes their loyalty to King George, and is proud of their British heritage, they and members of their household travel from Williamsburg to Boston to New York, and uncover intrigue everywhere they go.

I can't tell you how much I enjoyed Alexandra Norland's work, In Liberty's Wake. I was astounded to find out that this was her first novel. It was so polished, and simply a wonderful story. Author Norland has a gift in creating characters that are interesting, charismatic, and that her readers will truly relate to, thinking about them long after the story is done. If that is not the hallmark of a talented writer, I'm not sure what is. Any reader who enjoys historical fiction, stories with a strong female protagonist, or just a simply great work of fiction will love In Liberty's Wake: A Novel of British America. I highly recommend this debut novel, and I will be keeping my eyes peeled for the next offering by the highly talented and promising Alexandra Norland. She is sure to become a must-read author for any reader that gives her work a chance.

Tracy Slowiak

I must admit, I am a huge fan of historical fiction. Combining elements of strong characters, romance, history and strong storytelling, the genre produces some of my very favorite reads. But I must admit, I've been feeling a bit burned out on my favorite style lately. Many authors seem to be following a formula for their characters and plots, and perhaps not putting quite as much research as they should into the time period of their novel. So, when I picked up In Liberty's Wake: A Novel of British America, the first novel by debut author Alexandra Norland, I must admit it was with some degree of nervousness. But I am happy to report that I had nothing to worry about. Author Norland has provided her readers with a simply wonderful read, and one that had me obsessively turning the pages from the start. Following the story of the Alden family, and especially Arabella Alden, during the time before and during the American Revolution, the reader will find themselves completely engrossed in the lives of this privileged family as well as the slaves in their employ. Proud of their allegiance to the British crown, much is soon to change for the Alden family, and In Liberty's Wake takes its readers on this intriguing journey with them.

I loved this book. Loved. It. I'm not sure how else to describe my feelings regarding author Alexandra Norland's fantastic debut work. I finished the book days ago, having read it all in one sitting, and still find myself thinking about the characters, the setting and the situations. Any reader who enjoys historical fiction should pick this book up as soon as they can, and should certainly plan to set aside enough time to read the entire thing. They simply will not want to put it down. I will be avidly watching to see if Alexandra Norland releases a new book in the future, and I certainly hope that she does. This extremely exciting new author is one everyone should watch!

Gisela Dixon

In Liberty's Wake: A Novel of British America by Alexandra Norland is a fictional historical novel set in the period of American independence from the British in the 1700s. In Liberty's Wake revolves around the life of Arabella Alden and her family, and the people surrounding them. British by birth, Arabella’s family is settled in Williamsburg, Virginia, just as colonial settlement is getting stronger and achieving an independent hold on American soil. Born into affluence with plantations and slaves on hand, Arabella has seen it all, including the Revolutionary War and the new wave of change that came with it. One thing that remained the same though is slavery and, as such, characters like Cordelia and Cuffy add depth and realism to the story. What happens with the Alden family during this turbulent era of history forms the gist of the novel and, along with the in-depth character portrayals, as we get a glimpse into what life may have been like then for both blacks and whites.

In Liberty's Wake: A Novel of British America by Alexandra Norland is a meticulously researched novel, although some readers may find it to be a bit lengthy. However, this is a treat for anyone who enjoys historical era fiction. The writing is fluid and rich, and indeed fits the theme of the novel. I found the characters to be well drawn, and I especially liked the way Cuffy was portrayed. Arabella herself comes across as a strong, central figure, though not the only one in the novel. Reading this book does feel like being transported into a different era and the credit goes to Alexandra for that. All in all, I enjoyed In Liberty's Wake: A Novel of British America by Alexandra Norland.