City of Promise by Beverly Swerling
A Novel of New York's Gilded Age

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Synopsis

Beverly Swerling’s epic saga continues as New York emerges from the Civil War into the Gilded Age—a city marked by soaring expansion and teeming with unbridled ambition and dazzling glamour. Joshua Turner returns home from the war with only one leg yet determined to make his fortune. He aspires to build the city’s first apartment houses for Everyman, a daring vision that will make him the city’s first real estate titan but attracts the attention of a shadowy figure from his past. Mollie Brannigan, raised by her Auntie Eileen in the toniest bordello in town, is resigned at age twenty-two to spinsterhood. Then Joshua finds her at Macy’s, the city’s largest emporium, and takes her coaching in Central Park. In his love Mollie finds a world of possibilities, but a secret Eileen thought left behind in Ireland will force Mollie to employ all her wits to protect not just her chance at happiness but her life. Vividly imagined and awash in period detail, City of Promise delivers not only suspense and intrigue, daring plot twists and bitter rivalries, but also the captivating love story of two people struggling to forge their own destiny.
 

About Beverly Swerling

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BEVERLY SWERLING is the author of five previous novels, including the City of Dreams series, a four-volume historical saga set in old New York. She is also a consultant to other authors and an amateur historian. She lives in Philadelphia.
 
Published August 9, 2011 by Simon & Schuster. 448 pages
Genres: History, Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for City of Promise

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The ever-shifting alliances defy disentanglement, and some plotlines beggar belief: A widow in reduced circumstances teams up with a pirate to nab free blacks and collect runaway slave bounties, and Blakeman hopes his diamond will prompt the Holy Roman Emperor to back New York’s secession from th...

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When he’s not in Mei-Hua’s bower in China Village on Cherry Street, where wily nursemaid Ah Chee guards her, Sam plots to regain control of Devrey Shipping (lost by his profligate father Lansing) by building the world’s fastest clipper ship and wresting the China trade, including opium, from John...

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The surgeons and apothecaries are clearly favored as Swerling takes us on a fascinating journey through the bold early conflicts between herbal healing and surgery and the mainstream practices taught in the medical schools of the day.

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This installment finds an unhappy young man named Joshua Turner freshly returned to Manhattan from service in the Civil War, during which he’s lost a leg along the way and now sports a peg in its place.

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Swerling (City of Dreams, 2001, etc.) continues her series of "city of" novels celebrating the history of New York.

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Publishers Weekly

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Swerling's latest epic reveals the extremes of New York's Gilded Age. When one-legged Joshua Turner returns home after the Civil War, New York is still a city of horse-drawn vehicles and boarding hous

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and Morgan's best friend and former slave, Cuffy, whose fate is bound to Morgan's by love, hate and the same woman—the gorgeous Roisin Campbell—aka Mistress Healsall.

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Entertainment Weekly

The central characters in City of Promise — a one-legged war vet with progressive plans to house the burgeoning middle class, and the brothel-raised Macy's seamstress he falls for — drive the multipronged plot.

Aug 03 2011 | Read Full Review of City of Promise: A Novel of N...

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