A Free Man of Color

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Random House Publishing Group, Jan 5, 2011 - Fiction - 432 pages
13 Reviews
A lush and haunting novel of a city steeped in decadent pleasures...and of a man, proud and defiant, caught in a web of murder and betrayal.

It is 1833. In the midst of Mardi Gras, Benjamin January, a Creole physician and music teacher, is playing piano at the Salle d'Orleans when the evenings festivities are interrupted--by murder.

Ravishing Angelique Crozat, a notorious octoroon who travels in the city's finest company, has been strangled to death. With the authorities reluctant to become involved, Ben begins his own inquiry, which will take him through the seamy haunts of riverboatmen and into the huts of voodoo-worshipping slaves.

But soon the eyes of suspicion turn toward Ben—for, black as the slave who fathered him, this free man of color is still the perfect scapegoat....


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User Review  - Carol_W - LibraryThing

I found this a very satisfying period murder mystery set in and around New Orleans in 1833. It’s a couple of decades after the Louisiana Purchase and thirty years before the American Civil War, and ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - AltheaAnn - LibraryThing

My book club selection for this month. Previously (and many years ago) I'd read a few of Hambly's early fantasy books, and not been overly impressed - they were OK, but didn't transcend any of the ... Read full review

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About the author (2011)

Barbara Hambly is the author of The Emancipator’s Wife, a finalist for the Michael Shaara Award for Excellence in Civil War Fiction. She is also the author of Fever Season, a New York Times Notable Book of the Year, and seven acclaimed historical novels.


From the Paperback edition.

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