THE NEW YORK TIMES & USA TODAY BESTSELLER
In a compelling, richly researched novel that draws from thousands of letters and original sources, bestselling authors Stephanie Dray and Laura Kamoie tell the fascinating, untold story of Thomas Jefferson’s eldest daughter, Martha “Patsy” Jefferson Randolph–a woman who kept the secrets of our most enigmatic founding father and shaped an American legacy.
From her earliest days, Patsy Jefferson knows that though her father loves his circle of relatives dearly, his devotion to his country runs deeper still. As Thomas Jefferson’s oldest daughter, she becomes his helpmate, protector, and constant companion within the wake of her mother’s death, traveling with him when he becomes American minister to France.
It is in Paris, on the glittering court and a number of the first tumultuous days of revolution, that fifteen-year-old Patsy learns about her father’s troubling liaison with Sally Hemings, a slave girl her own age. Meanwhile, Patsy has fallen in love–with her father’s protégé William Short, a staunch abolitionist and ambitious diplomat. Torn between love, principles, and the bonds of circle of relatives, Patsy questions whether she can make a selection a life as William’s wife and still be a devoted daughter.
Her choice will follow her within the future years, to Virginia farmland, Monticello, or even the White House. And as scandal, tragedy, and poverty threaten her circle of relatives, Patsy should make a decision how much she will sacrifice to give protection to her father’s reputation, within the process defining not just his political legacy, but that of the nation he founded.