Jane Clarke is a young woman from a small town whose father sends her to Boston to care for her feeble aunt. Thrust into the building conflicts between the rowdy Sons of Liberty and the hated British soldiers, Jane's eyes reveal the human aspects of both groups. Famous historical figures enter her life and she sees John Adams as a fair minded lawyer and family man; and Henry Knox, to her, is a bookshop clerk and potential suitor. The action in the novel leads to a climax in which Jane is a witness to the Boston Massacre, and the account told from a personal perspective takes on a much different flair than what history books typically describe.
I really enjoyed The Rebellion of Jane Clarke. Sally Gunning took the events of the USA's history and added a human perspective - effectively bridging a two hundred and forty year gap to make distant occurrences interesting and relevant. At times, Jane came across as a little too modern for her time period, but I appreciated that she was a headstrong and engaging protagonist. Fans of historical fiction, especially those who enjoy a colonial American setting, will definitely want to read this book.
(An advance review copy of this book was provided through LibraryThing's Early Reviewers program. The Rebellion of Jane Clarke is on sale Tuesday, June 1, 2010.)
So now for a question, for those who enjoy historical fiction - does a love of history cause you to enjoy historical fiction or is it historical fiction that gives you a better appreciation for history? Or conversely, if you don't like historical fiction does it stem from a dislike of history?