NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER
"Engrossing...entertaining...the perfect book to take to the beach." - Boston Herald
Two families, both carried by the Mayflower across stormy seas... both destined to generations of proud leadership, shameful intrigue, and passion for the sandy crest of land that became their heritage...
This is the story of the Bigelow and Hilyard clans, from their first years on America's shores, through the fury of her wars and the glory of her triumphs, to our own time when young Geoff Hilyard must fight to save both his marriage to a Bigelow heir and the windswept coast he loves. It is a struggle that will take him deep into the past, to a centuries-old feud that never died..And on a dangerous quest for a priceless relic of American history that has lain hidden in the Cape for over two hundred years.
In a sweeping historical saga packed with history and incident, Martin ( Back Bay ) follows two intertwined yet bitterly antagonistic families from their Pilgrim origins to the present day. On board the Mayflower, sanctimonious church elder Ezra Bigelow and whaler Jack Hilyard, who defies the Pilgrims' rules of piety and obedience, take an immediate and intense dislike to each other. An observant mariner on board ship keeps a detailed log and chronicles a shocking incident that would bring shame and dishonor upon the Bigelow family if it were made known. The log is lost, but its trail gleams like a golden thread through the narrative, and, as the ever-wealthier Bigelows and the rakish Hilyards clash bitterly over the years (particularly over a prime piece of Cape Cod shoreline called Jack's Island that is continually changing hands), the log emerges briefly now and then to inspire blackmail and unease. After Martin's less than reverent look at our Pilgrim forefathers, he packs the narrative with abundant adultery, several massacres, pirateering, slave-trading and rum-running. In the current generation, Geoff Hilyard is trying to save his part of Jack's Island from avaricious Bigelow developers. To stave off financial ruin, he is searching for the elusive Mayflower log, now an enormously valuable historical document. Martin gives Michener a run for his money with this rousing tale. 75,000 first printing; $120,000 ad/promo; Literary Guild and Doubleday Book Club alternates; author tour.
Customer ReviewsSee All
One of the finest novels I have read. History mixed with a great story. Suspense, anger, sorrow,mystery....a fun read that you'll want to read over and over.