I just finished “Letters to Kezia” by Peni Jo Renner.
This is one of those rare books you cannot put down until you’ve finished it, and I read it in one sitting. The characters are based upon known facts of the author’s ancestors, and she has transformed them into a ripping tale of trust, lies, and deceit. Mary Case was a colonial woman of Connecticut, seduced into trusting a man who almost became the death of her, literally. Her daughter, Kezia, was the product of that tangled web, and Mary ultimately faced the task of telling Kezia the truth about her life and her father. The characters are rich and compelling. Their adventure is fascinating.
It is 1693 in Hereford, Connecticut, when Mary Case, the spinster daughter of a Puritan minister, finds herself hopelessly smitten by the roguish thief, Daniel Eames. Betrothed to a man she does not like or love, she is soon compelled to help Daniel escape from jail. Suddenly, she finds herself on the run, not only accused of being Daniel’s accomplice, but also of murder.
The fugitive pair soon finds solace-and a mutual attraction-among the escapee’s Algonquin friends until two men from Daniel’s dark past hunt them down. After Mary is captured and returned home to await trial, a tragedy takes the life of her younger sister, revealing a dark secret Mary’s father has kept for months. But just as Mary learns she is pregnant, she makes a horrifying discovery about Daniel that changes everything and prompts her to develop an unlikely bond with his mother, Rebecca, who soon saves Mary from a shocking fate. It is not until years later that her daughter, Kezia, finally learns the truth about her biological father and family.
Letters to Kezia shares a courageous woman’s journey through a Puritan life and beyond as she struggles with adversity and betrayal, and discovers that loyalty can sometimes mean the difference between life and death.