Lars D. H. Hedbor will be the Special Guest on Versus History Podcast #30. The blog post below is by Lars himself, in advance of the release of his new book.
Our image of the American Revolution is too often reduced to a caricature of white men in powdered wigs prancing about the countryside, quoting Jefferson and Paine in between picturesque set-piece battles with the vile Redcoats. Exploding that myth, my new historical novel The Freedman: Tales From a Revolution - North Carolina reveals the previously untold story of how former slaves made themselves indispensable to the success of the Revolution in North Carolina.
The Freedman tells the story of Calabar, brought from Africa to North-Carolina as a boy and sold on the docks as chattel property to a plantation owner. Abruptly released from bondage, he must find his way in a society that has no place for him, but which is itself struggling with the threat of British domination. Reeling from personal griefs, and drawn into the chaos of the Revolution, Calabar knows that one wrong move could cost him his freedom—or even that of the nation.
I was inspired to write The Freedman when I came across a news report about the former mayor of Greenville, North Carolina, who discovered that his African-American ancestors had actually fought on the patriot side. I immediately felt compelled to discover what that experience had been like. The more I learned, the more I knew that I had to tell the story of their vital contributions to the independence and liberty of a society that barely even tolerated their presence.
My first novel, The Prize, was published in 2011, followed by The Light in 2013, and The Smoke, The Declaration, and The Break in 2014; The Wind was published in 2015, The Darkness in 2016, and The Path in 2017. Each book is a standalone novel, looking at the experience of the American Revolution from a different colony – including some usually ignored for having the poor judgment of not being part of the original thirteen.
I have also written extensively about this era for the Journal of the American Revolution, and appeared as a featured guest on the Emmy-nominated Discovery Network program The American Revolution, which premiered nationally on the American Heroes Channel in late 2014. I also appeared as a series expert on America: Fact vs. Fiction for Discovery Networks, and was a panelist at the Historical Novel Society’s 2017 North American Conference.
The Freedman was released by Brief Candle Press on May 31st, 2018, and will retail for $12.99/€12.99/£9.99 in paperback through all online booksellers, and for $5.99/€5.99/£4.99 in electronic book format, through all major ebook providers.
For links to all of my books, visit my Web site at http://larsdhhedbor.com/. Follow me on Twitter @LarsDHHedbor for daily tweets about #TodayInHistory in the #RevWar, and see my page on Facebook at http://facebook.com/Lars.D.H.Hedbor/ to learn about the latest news about my work.