Rebellious Heart makes history come alive in the years prior to the War of Independence. The first sentence gripped me; the story and the writing skill held me captive until the end.
Hedlund bases her fictional characters on real people who lived during those times. Ben Ross and Susanna Smith must make life-changing choices amidst looming threats in the thirteen colonies of the new world.
Birthed into families of different social status, Ben and Susanna resist their growing affection for each other. Though he has a Harvard law degree, he is a poor farmers son. Susanna is born into high social status and wealth. Matters of conscience and circumstances push them together and gradually Susanna moves away from the stiff and merciless norms of the time. They risk terrible consequences—alienation of family and hanging for treason — while they move deeper and deeper toward their quest for freedom. For them, lines of behavior are no longer clearly defined, but swing on both sides of the social dictates and the law.
Hedlund lets us see the determination of those loyal to Britain, their fear for loved ones at risk, and their fierce adherence to the morés surrounding social tradition and religion in this page-turning drama that explores ethical dilemmas.
Ross and Susanna risk discovery to firmly stand against family, the law, and the British crown, the greatest power on earth at that time. The novel brings to life the courage many embraced in the midst of their well-founded fear, yearning to win freedom from tyranny in the thirteen colonies.
Jody Hedlund’s Rebellious Heart shows us individuals stirring the seeds of rebellion and inspiring many to follow their lead, forging the beginning of the free and independent United State of America. This is her fifth historical romance novel.
[Reviewer’s Note: Rebellious Heart is appropriate for all ages.]