Written by Alice Hoffman this book is set in the Virgin Islands in St. Thomas in the early 1800’s.
Growing up on the island, Rachel dreams of life in faraway Paris and her salvation lies in their maid’s belief in her strengths and her life-long friendship with Jestine, Adelle’s daughter. But Rachel is married off to a widower with 3 children to save her father’s business.
When her husband dies suddenly, and his handsome much younger nephew Frederick arrives from France to settle the estate, Rachel embarks on a passionate love affair that sparks a scandal amongst the small refugee community of Jews of which Rachel and her family are members.
This is a beautifully written novel with empathetic characters largely based on true life events and introduces in Rachel’s son, the painter Pissaro.
Title: The Marriage of Opposites
Author: Alice Hoffman