“Mrs. Lincoln’s Rival” by Jennifer Chiaverini

I have been reading novels by Jennifer Chiaverini for many years, including all of her Elm Creek Quilt series.  I recently read “Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker” and was captivated by it.  This latest novel, “Mrs. Lincoln’s Rival” is as wonderful as her other stories.  I am really glad that Ms.  Chiaverini is branching out to writing such interesting historical fiction.  Even though I know that these “Mrs. Lincoln’s” books are mostly fiction, I still appreciate the way Ms. Chiaverini brings out all the elements of history surrounding that period.

In “Mrs. Lincoln‘s Rival”,  Mary Todd Lincoln is portrayed as a sometimes unstable character, displaying intermittent histrionics over real or imagined slights to her or her husband’s position in Washington City.  Kate Chase, the oldest daughter of Governor Salmon Chase, is Mrs. Lincoln’s rival in the social settings of the capitol.  She is a lovely hostess for her father and equally admired and despised by the social set.

I really enjoyed reading this book.  I am a lover of all historical fiction, especially those written about the war years in the United States.  This book held my interest throughout and since I am aware of Ms. Chiaverini’s extensive research in writing such a book, I felt that I was actually reading current accounts.  I am looking forward to reading her other novels set in the Civil War period, “Spy Mistress” and “Mrs. Grant and Madame Jule”.  I would think that they would be tops on my list as well.

I was sent a free print copy of this book by NightOwlReviews.con and a free Kindle copy by NetGalley.com in return for my honest review of the book.


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