Tuesday, April 17, 2007


Emily Barton's novel Brookland has been keeping me company the past few days. I'm not a fan of all historical fiction, for it often seems like everyone in the story knows the three famous people of that era (see: the Alienist). This one is good enough that it's completely engrossing: a perfect at-home-sick book.

The story is set in late 18th century Brooklyn, and tells the story of woman who runs her family's gin distillery on the shores of the East River while dreaming about building a bridge that will connect her town to Manhattan. Her main characters seem very modern for the 1790s although they do make for a good read. Sprinkled with last names that are now streets: Luquer, Schermerhorn, Boerum, Livingston, and Remsen, Barton probably takes her liberties with history, but halfway in, I'm completely captivated by the story of Brooklyn as it once was.

No comments: