“[THE HAMILTON AFFAIR] is a juicy answer to Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton…”
“Cobbs’s depiction of Hamilton will endear him in the hearts of readers and shed light on one of the most misunderstood figures in American history and the woman who shared his life.”
“Although it’s entering a crowded field of biographies, fictional or not, of various Founding Fathers, Cobbs’ meticulous account holds its own—even without catchy tunes.”
“Why did Alexander Hamilton risk everything? Why did Eliza Hamilton stand by him? This complicated couple who did so much for young America spring to life in this entertaining, well-told tale.”
—Cokie Roberts, author of Ladies of Liberty
“It’s been more than 200 years since Alexander Hamilton was as celebrated as he is right now. What a stroke of luck that an actual award-winning historian has come along just now with such a richly detailed and entertaining novel about the most freshly fabulous American Founder.”
—Kurt Andersen, author of True Believers
THE HAMILTON AFFAIR
By Elizabeth Cobbs
More than two centuries have passed since Alexander Hamilton caught a fatal bullet from Aaron Burr in the famous duel on the banks of the Hudson River. Yet the enduring appeal of Hamilton’s revolutionary ideas and impassioned personality is stronger than ever, evidenced by popular sensations like Ron Chernow’s Pulitzer Prize-winning biography and the record-setting smash Broadway musicalHamilton.
And while the Founding Father’s remarkable wife Elizabeth Schuyler has certainly been more than a footnote in the Hamilton legacy, the depth of her humanity and compassion—for her husband, for America, and for public service—has not yet been brought to life on the page… until now, in THE HAMILTON AFFAIR (Arcade hardcover, on sale Aug 2) by award-winning historical fiction and nonfiction writer Elizabeth Cobbs.
Focusing on the sweeping true love story between the enigmatic, brilliant General Hamilton and the feisty, adventurous Schuyler, THE HAMILTON AFFAIR is a pitch-perfect, faithful historical novel that casts new light on familiar events and reveals fascinating lesser-known aspects of Hamilton’s character.
Cobbs brings to the Hamilton-Schuyler courtship and marriage the same meticulous research standards and analytical eye that made her previous books American Umpire (currently being adapted into a PBS documentary) and Broken Promises: A Novel Of The Civil War praised by critics and enjoyed by readers.
With a vividly-imagined cast of iconic real-life characters including George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and the Marquis de Lafayette,THE HAMILTON AFFAIR features a high-energy narrative of the intense events of the American Revolution and the pivotal role Alexander Hamilton played in them.
From Hamilton’s close relationship with his fellow soldier Washington to his bitter intellectual and ideological rivalry with Jefferson, Burr, John Adams and others, Cobbs never hits a false note in evoking the dialogue, mannerisms and sense of place that defined the era.
The book also delves into the origins of both main characters, exploring the roots of Hamilton’s lifelong opposition to slavery, beginning as an illegitimate child on the Caribbean island of St. Croix. Readers also will gain a sensitive understanding of how the death of Hamilton’s mother left a hole in his heart that he spent much of his early adulthood trying to fill.
In her rendering of Elizabeth Schuyler, a beloved daughter of one of New York’s most wealthy families, Cobbs takes a nuanced approach to depicting her intense attraction to and eventual love for Hamilton in spite of many obstacles – for one, the social stigma of marrying a “bastard” child, as well as his later infidelity.
Schuyler’s place in history as the only “Founding Mother” to embrace public service will be cemented by THE HAMILTON AFFAIR’s extensively portrayal of her empathy for orphaned children, first in petitioning Congress for veteran’s pay support in raising her and Hamilton’s children, and later in life opening New York’s first orphanage.
THE HAMILTON AFFAIR is a masterful interpretation of two incomparable American lives filled with drama, intrigue, conflict, rivalry, and love above all. While Alexander Hamilton may be having a pop culture “moment” of late, his life story and impact on America’s birth are timeless, and Elizabeth Cobbs’ best book yet is a unique and essential angle on both.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elizabeth Cobbs, holds the Melbern G. Glasscock Chair in American History at Texas A&M University. She is the author of four books on American history and a winner of the Allan Nevins Prize. Her novelBroken Promises: A Novel of the Civil War won the San Diego Book Award. Her only non-fiction trade book, American Umpire, has been adapted into a documentary narrated by Jim Lehrer and will debut this fall on Public Television stations across the nation.
THE HAMILTON AFFAIR: A Novel
By Elizabeth Cobbs
On Sale: August 2, 2016 | 9781628727203 | $25.99 hardcover
When I first accepted this review opportunity, I expected a kitschy historical romance, but The Hamilton Affair was much more serious and even critical of some of the worst atrocities being committed at the dawn of our nation. An engrossing narrative filled with the passion and conviction of its characters, The Hamilton Affair addresses some dark subjects, and I think it’s important for us to remember that this is based in fact and thus we should continue to remind young people that humans are capable of great harm against one another, sometimes using merely the excuse of not knowing any better which is flimsy at best. Eliza and Alexander had some of the most heartwarming moments, coupled with some rather hilarious debates and even a bit of awkwardness, making them much more human and likeable. If you need more Hamilton in your life, or simply enjoy historical fiction, I highly recommend you pick up a copy!