A Wife in Watercolor

A Wife in Watercolor

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 "Barbara Shamp has given us a heavily researched historical novel, extremely well written, and expansive in its coverage of the diverse ethnic populations on the Eastern Shore at that time. As a novel, it also has a depth of expression that lays bare the nature of the human condition."

Harold O. Wilson, Delmarva Today Writer’s Edition

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One woman’s status is seared into her skin. The other has no freedom. Can they disrupt a colony built on privilege before they face the gallows?

Oxford, Maryland. 1747. Sarah Wise would give anything to feel safe. Homeless and mourning her kidnapped little girl, the widowed housekeeper makes a shrewd decision to accept a marriage offer from wealthy shipping tradesman Robert Morris, Sr. But after she witnesses the abuse of his slaves and he brands her with the company seal, she’s petrified she’ll always be a mistress and never a wife.

Yearie longs for a more just system. Endlessly loyal to the young mother who controls her manumission, the enslaved woman works hard to open her owner’s eyes to the cruelty of their master-servant culture. But as her heart burns for a man she can’t openly love and her calculated disruptions draw unwanted attention, she’s terrified change is slowly slipping through her fingers.

Heeding Yearie’s outcry, Sarah secretly teams up with an underground network to put right what she can in their master’s business dealings. And with Yearie clearing the path for revolution but still hopelessly hitched to the wrong wagon, she fears she’s made a costly mistake in laying her freedom in Sarah’s hands.

Will their courageous play for a modicum of respect push them both into an unmarked grave?

In this harrowing journey into pre-Revolutionary America, B.B. Shamp brings to life the true fighting spirit of women suffering under an iron-fisted patriarchal society. Transporting you to a fascinating era and revealing the vivid voice of unsung champions and their richly detailed fight for survival, you’ll be gripped all the way to its shocking conclusion.



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