The Family Mansion by Anthony C. Winkler

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BONUS: This ebook includes an excerpt from Anthony C. Winkler's God Carlos.

THE FAMILY MANSION is a historical novel that tells the story of Hartley Fudges, whose personal destiny unfolds against the backdrop of 19th-century British culture, a time when English society was based upon the strictest subordination and stratification of the classes. As the second son of a hereditary duke and his father's favorite, Hartley, under different circumstances, might have inherited the inside track to his father's estate and titles. But the English law of succession was rigidly dictated by the principle of male primogeniture, with all the property, assets, titles, and debts devolving to the firstborn son and his issue, leaving nothing for the other sons.

LIKE MANY SECOND SONS, HARTLEY DECIDES TO MIGRATE TO JAMAICA at the age of twenty-three. This at first seems sensible: in the early 1800s Jamaica was far and away the richest and most opulent of all the crown colonies, and the single greatest producer of sugar in the world. But for all its fabulous wealth, Jamaica was a difficult and inhospitable place for an immigrant. The mortality rate for new immigrants was over 50% for the first year of residence. Some immigrant groups fared even worse. The island's white population that ran the lucrative sugarcane industry was outnumbered 10-to-1 by the largely enslaved black population. Slave revolts were common with brutal reprisals such as the decapitation of ringleaders and nailing the severed heads to trees.

THE COMPLEX SAGA OF HARTLEY'S LIFE is revealed in vivid scenes that depict the vicissitudes of 19th-century English and Jamaican societies. Aside from violent slave revolts, newcomers had to survive the nemesis of the white man in the tropics--namely, yellow fever. With Hartley's point of view as its primary focus, the narrative transports readers to exotic lands, simultaneously exploring the brutality of England's slavery-based colonization.


About Anthony C. Winkler

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Anthony C. Winkler was born in Kingston, Jamaica, in 1942 and is widely recognized as one of the island's finest exports. After being expelled from Cornwall College for refusing to submit to corporal punishment (which entailed being beaten with a cane), he eventually made his way to California where he attended Citrus College and California State University, earning a BA and MA in English. His first published novel, The Painted Canoe (1984), received critical acclaim and was followed by The Lunatic (1987), The Great Yacht Race (1992), The Duppy (1997), Crocodile (2009), and Dog War (2007). Trust the Darkness: My Life as a Writer, his autobiography, was published in 2008. His writing credits also include film scripts and plays. He lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife Cathy.
Published May 7, 2013 by Akashic Books. 224 pages
Genres: History, Travel, Literature & Fiction, Humor & Entertainment. Fiction

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