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The Whiskey Rebels

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

David Liss's bestselling historical thrillers, including A Conspiracy of Paper and The Coffee Trader, have been called remarkable and rousing: the perfect combination of scrupulous research and breathless excitement. Now Liss delivers his best novel yet in an entirely new setting — America in the years after the Revolution, an unstable nation where desperate schemers vie for wealth, power, and a chance to shape a country's destiny.

Ethan Saunders, once among General Washington's most valued spies, now lives in disgrace, haunting the taverns of Philadelphia. An accusation of treason has long since cost him his reputation and his beloved fiancée, Cynthia Pearson, but at his most desperate moment he is recruited for an unlikely task — finding Cynthia's missing husband. To help her, Saunders must serve his old enemy, Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton, who is engaged in a bitter power struggle with political rival Thomas Jefferson over the fragile young nation's first real financial institution: the Bank of the United States.

Meanwhile, Joan Maycott is a young woman married to another Revolutionary War veteran. With the new states unable to support their ex-soldiers, the Maycotts make a desperate gamble: trade the chance of future payment for the hope of a better life on the western Pennsylvania frontier. There, amid hardship and deprivation, they find unlikely friendship and a chance for prosperity with a new method of distilling whiskey. But on an isolated frontier, whiskey is more than a drink; it is currency and power, and the Maycotts' success attracts the brutal attention of men in Hamilton's orbit, men who threaten to destroy all Joan holds dear.

As their causes intertwine, Joan and Saunders — both patriots in their own way — find themselves on opposing sides of a daring scheme that will forever change their lives and their new country. The Whiskey Rebels is a superb rendering of a perilous age and a nation nearly torn apart — and David Liss's most powerful novel yet.

Review:

"Set in and around Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and New York City in the years after the Revolutionary War, this clever thriller from Liss (The Ethical Assassin) follows the adventures of Ethan Saunders, once a valiant spy for General Washington, who's fallen on hard times by war's end. Suspected of treason, Ethan has lost the love of his life, Cynthia, who's married the fiendish Jacob Pearson, an entrepreneur who managed to prosper during the British occupation of Philadelphia. At Cynthia's urging, Ethan agrees to go looking for the missing Jacob, prompted in large part by a desire to redeem his reputation. Meanwhile, the so-called whiskey rebels on the western frontier are trying to bring down the hated Alexander Hamilton and his Bank of the United States. The courageous Ethan is a likable rogue, and even though Ethan spends too much time delving into the complications of 18th-century finance, he can be counted on when the chips are down and the odds against him soar." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

If timing really is everything, David Liss should have himself a best-seller. His new book, "The Whiskey Rebels," revolves around the resentment of Western libertarians toward Eastern elites, a plot to bring down the nation's financial system and a scandal that threatens the federal government. Sound familiar?

Everything old is new again. The Whiskey Rebellion of 1794 was a seminal... Washington Post Book Review (read the entire Washington Post review)

Review:

"Liss brings it all together in the end, uniting multiple narrators and different time lines in a bravura finish....A raucous mix of historical fiction and action-adventure thriller." Booklist (Starred Review)

Review:

"Liss portrays post-Revolutionary Philadelphia and New York more effectively than he does the western Pennsylvania frontier...but this detracts only slightly from a thoroughly enjoyable novel. Recommended." Library Journal

Review:

"Uneven, sometimes risibly overstuffed narrative that's nevertheless compulsively readable." Kirkus Reviews

Synopsis:

From the bestselling, award-winning author of A Conspiracy of Paper comes his most powerful historical mystery yet. Set in post-Revolutionary War America, The Whiskey Rebels is a superb rendering of a vivid and perilous age.

About the Author

David Liss is the author of A Spectacle of Corruption, The Coffee Trader, and A Conspiracy of Paper, winner of the 2000 Edgar Award for Best First Novel, as well as The Ethical Assassin. He lives in San Antonio with his wife and children.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

donmar, December 8, 2008 (view all comments by donmar)
I've read some of the reviews on other websites. An important reviewer mentioned that Liss's depiction of the Western Pennsylvania frontier and also his focus (or lack thereof) on the actual Whiskey Rebellion fell short. I definitely agree, having grown up in that area, and having ancestors who were early settlers to Pittsburgh. I thought the characters were stereotypes and that the action, particularly once the settlers left Philadelphia, bordered on melodrama.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781400064205
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Liss, David
Publisher:
Random House
Subject:
Married people
Subject:
Pennsylvania
Subject:
Mystery & Detective - General
Subject:
Suspense
Subject:
Historical - General
Subject:
Thrillers
Subject:
Historical fiction
Subject:
General Fiction
Subject:
Literature-A to Z
Copyright:
Publication Date:
September 30, 2008
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
544
Dimensions:
9.59x6.59x1.35 in. 1.92 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Popular Fiction » Contemporary Thrillers

The Whiskey Rebels Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.50 In Stock
Product details 544 pages Random House - English 9781400064205 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Set in and around Philadelphia, Pittsburgh and New York City in the years after the Revolutionary War, this clever thriller from Liss (The Ethical Assassin) follows the adventures of Ethan Saunders, once a valiant spy for General Washington, who's fallen on hard times by war's end. Suspected of treason, Ethan has lost the love of his life, Cynthia, who's married the fiendish Jacob Pearson, an entrepreneur who managed to prosper during the British occupation of Philadelphia. At Cynthia's urging, Ethan agrees to go looking for the missing Jacob, prompted in large part by a desire to redeem his reputation. Meanwhile, the so-called whiskey rebels on the western frontier are trying to bring down the hated Alexander Hamilton and his Bank of the United States. The courageous Ethan is a likable rogue, and even though Ethan spends too much time delving into the complications of 18th-century finance, he can be counted on when the chips are down and the odds against him soar." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Liss brings it all together in the end, uniting multiple narrators and different time lines in a bravura finish....A raucous mix of historical fiction and action-adventure thriller."
"Review" by , "Liss portrays post-Revolutionary Philadelphia and New York more effectively than he does the western Pennsylvania frontier...but this detracts only slightly from a thoroughly enjoyable novel. Recommended."
"Review" by , "Uneven, sometimes risibly overstuffed narrative that's nevertheless compulsively readable."
"Synopsis" by , From the bestselling, award-winning author of A Conspiracy of Paper comes his most powerful historical mystery yet. Set in post-Revolutionary War America, The Whiskey Rebels is a superb rendering of a vivid and perilous age.
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