From the best-selling author of On Secret Service comes a novel that spans decades and generations. Sweeping from the bitterly divided Carolina frontier of the 1770s through the tragic destruction of the city during the Civil War, and peopled by aristocrats and abolitionists, slaves and freedmen, Charleston is Jakes at his very best.
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"From the American Revolution through the Civil War, John Jakes traces the lives, passions, and fortunes of the Bell family of Charleston, South Carolina. This is a satisfyingly old-fashioned saga, replete with brave men and cowards, slaves and freedmen, abolitionists and slave owners, vixens and heroines. It's all delivered with the confidence of an expert in historical fiction. Did pre-Revolutionary War Southerners speak with Southern accents? This reviewer thinks that they may have sounded more British than Southern. But for understandable reasons, actor Dylan Baker has chosen to give all the characters Southern voices from the start of the story. It works. Baker paints the characters with telling variations in tone. Sugary-sweet villainous women, clear-voiced upstanding citizens, exhausted slaves are real enough to keep one rapt. George Truett's abridgment necessarily leaves out some of the story's background and development, which can be frustrating in a multigenerational saga. Yet he cut without leaving obvious gaps, and the meat of the story remains. An entertaining listen. A.C.S. (c) AudioFile 2002, Portland, Maine"
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