Trouble The Water

TROUBLE THE WATER

Jacqueline Friedland

SILVER MEDAL, INDEPENDENT PUBLISHER BOOK AWARDS Best Regional Fiction – South

“… will seize readers from the first page and not let go.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Fans of Paulette Jiles and Julia Quinn will adore this triumphant novel of intrigue, secrecy, and redemption.”—Booklist

Abigail Milton was born into the British middle class, but her family has landed in unthinkable debt. To ease their burdens, Abby’s parents send her to America to live off the charity of their old friend, Douglas Elling.

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SILVER MEDAL, INDEPENDENT PUBLISHER BOOK AWARDS Best Regional Fiction – South

“… will seize readers from the first page and not let go.”—Kirkus Reviews

“Fans of Paulette Jiles and Julia Quinn will adore this triumphant novel of intrigue, secrecy, and redemption.”—Booklist

Abigail Milton was born into the British middle class, but her family has landed in unthinkable debt. To ease their burdens, Abby’s parents send her to America to live off the charity of their old friend, Douglas Elling. When she arrives in Charleston at the age of seventeen, Abigail discovers that the man her parents raved about is a disagreeable widower who wants little to do with her. To her relief, he relegates her care to a governess, leaving her to settle into his enormous estate with little interference. But just as she begins to grow comfortable in her new life, she overhears her benefactor planning the escape of a local slave―and suddenly, everything she thought she knew about Douglas Elling is turned on its head.

Abby’s attempts to learn more about Douglas and his involvement in abolition initiate a circuitous dance of secrets and trust. As Abby and Douglas each attempt to manage their complicated interior lives, readers can’t help but hope that their meandering will lead them straight to each other. Set against the vivid backdrop of Charleston twenty years before the Civil War, Trouble the Water is a captivating tale replete with authentic details about Charleston’s aristocratic planter class, American slavery, and the Underground Railroad.

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  • SparkPress
  • Paperback
  • May 2018
  • 352 Pages
  • 9781943006540

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$16.95

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About Jacqueline Friedland

Jacqueline FriedlandJacqueline Friedland holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and a JD from NYU Law School. She practiced as an attorney in New York before returning to school to receive her MFA from Sarah Lawrence College. She lives in New York with her husband, four children, and a tiny dog. Trouble The Water is her first novel.

Author Website

Praise

2018 IPPY Silver Winner in South – Best Regional Fiction

“Sweet and tender, this is a story with a slow-burning chemistry between the main leads, in addition to plenty of historical facts for readers who are seeking a well- researched historical fiction novel. It’s a story not to be rushed through, and but one to savor.”Fresh Fiction

“With compelling characters, a charming peek into Charleston society, a heart-racing romance, rich historical detail, and an epilogue that will have you holding your breath, Friedland has written a well-crafted novel that will stay with you long after you turn the final page.”Susie Orman Schnall, award-winning author of The Subway Girls, The Balance Project, and On Grace

“With compelling characters, a charming peek into Charleston society, a heart-racing romance, rich historical detail, and an epilogue that will have you holding your breath, Friedland has written a well-crafted novel that will stay with you long after you turn the final page.”Susie Orman Schnall, award-winning author of The Subway GirlsThe Balance Project, and On Grace

“Friedland is a modern Bronte sister remixed with Kathleen Grissom or Leila Meacham. Trouble the Water is the riveting story of Abby, who travels across the sea, fleeing Liverpool, poverty, and an unsavory uncle, for Charleston, where a wealthy friend of her father, Douglas, lives. Douglas has pledged himself to the fight to end slavery, and for that, he has made the ultimate sacrifice. Abby fights inner demons and tries to find her place in Charleston high society while her brooding guardian reconciles the past and returns to his beloved cause. Lovers of Civil War-era historical fiction will rejoice at Friedland’s triumphant novel of love, friendship, and the most important issues of the day.”Bethany Ball, author of What to do About the Solomons

“The complicated history of the antebellum South comes alive in Friedland’s debut novel and offers readers an exciting and fast-paced literary journey that explores complicated relationships, the importance of friendship, and the necessary power of love.”Kris Radish, best-selling author of A Dangerous Woman From Nowhere

Discussion Questions

1. In Trouble the Water, we meet three characters trying to move on with their lives after suffering trauma. How do their traumas affect their personalities? How do their pasts affect their interactions with others?

2. Abby never wants to be beholden to anyone or to rely on anyone. Her independence means everything to her. Do you think this makes her more sensitive toward the cause of Abolition?

3. Discuss how parents are portrayed in this novel.

4. Friedland depicts a broad cross-section of women in her story: society belle, governess, mother, sister, charity case. What roles were open to women in the 1840’s in America? In England? What do you think Abby’s family hoped would happen to her when they sent her to America?

5. How do friends and friendships define this story?

6. Did you learn some things about the history of the pre-Civil War South that you had not known prior to reading the novel? What did you learn?

7. How, or how not, is historical fiction important to understanding our history?

8. Secrets play a determining role in the lives of key characters. Discuss.

9. Abby is a character that readers want to see succeed. What makes Abby so compelling?

10. The ending is a surprise. Did you see it coming? What do you foresee for the boys?

11. Why do you think Friedland chose the title of her book? How does it relate to the novel as a whole?