Review – That Woman: Beating the Odds in Colonial New York by Wayne Clark

Synopsis: Kidnapped in France and brought to America as an indentured servant, a young woman takes on the brutal merchant king of New York’s East River waterfront…Illness suddenly deprives 17-year-old Sarah Da Silva and her older brother Jacob of a mother. Before Sarah has come to terms with that loss, her merchant father grows frail and increasingly desperate in the face of impending bankruptcy. On the rainy night their father scours the docks of Bordeaux, France, to make his final bid to save his family, his children are kidnapped and forced onto a ship bound for New York City where they’ll be separated and sold to the highest bidder as indentured labor. Purchased by a grotesque merchant whose wealth, backed by a team of henchmen, allows him to dominate the chaotic East River docks, Sarah strikes back the only way she can. Vowing to never allow him to put his hands on her again, she presses a knife to his fat neck. She demands her freedom, a roof over her head and the means to start a business. Her leverage? Knowledge obtained on the voyage that would bring the big man to his knees forever. He yields to her demands but privately swears to become her worst nightmare.

 Growing up in the 1700’s was a precarious time, where you could easily be ruined by a stroke of bad luck. Gabriel Da Silva tried his best to prepare his children for taking over his business or even building their own businesses. Who would think you need to prepare your child to be kidnapped? I mean seriously most people do not have the particular type of skills to know what to do. The characters are authentic for the time period as well as credible. Sarah will steal your heart with her intelligence, compassion and determination. Jacob is intelligent, funny and extremely skilled. Noah is smart, loyal and strong. Michel is smart, ambitious and a great leader. Sarah’s compassionate heart brings them all together as family.
The author’s writing style and pace is good and keeps the reader captivated. It was a little slow starting out but quickly picks up after first few chapters. Sarah and Jacob were taken to a new country far from their home and had to rebuild their lives. Despite the fat man’s several attempts to harm Sarah, in the end she becomes extremely successful. I couldn’t imagine how hard it must be to try to survive after what she had went through. It is an amazing tale of survival, revenge and love mixed with action adventure.
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