In Freedom's Light
A Sweeping Saga of Faith, Friendship, and the Enduring Bonds of Family
It is 1785 and enforcers of the Spanish Inquisition are still hunting down and torturing conversos—Jews who outwardly converted to Christianity, but who practiced their Judaism in secret. When nineteen-year-old converso Anica Amselem refuses a cut of pork in Valencia’s marketplace, she and her husband Efren come under the suspicion of the Church as secret Jews, endangering their lives and that of their infant daughter Isabel. Accompanied by Anica’s beloved friend and servant, Mariana, they set sail for Charleston, South Carolina where Efren’s uncle, Philip, owns a rice plantation. Within weeks of their arrival, Anica’s promise to her dead mother to continue to observe her Jewish faith and light the Sabbath candles, and Efren’s plans to start a shipping business begin to unravel. Even as they form unexpected bonds with the young house slave Ruth and her mother Lindy, Anica and Efren are forced to confront Philip’s secret life of debauchery, and the horrors of enslavement. Set against the background of eighteenth and nineteenth century Charleston and Philadelphia, In Freedom’s Light creates an intricately woven tapestry of three generations of the unique and unforgettable Amselem family. Filled with their joys and sorrows, hopes and disappointments, it is also a tale of the power of love and friendship. Above all, it is an affirmation of family beyond race and bloodlines, and the strength of the bonds and traditions that unite us.
Format: 6 x 9 Black & White Paperback, 326 pages
Publisher: Outskirts Press (Dec 20, 2021)
Genre: FICTION / Historical / Colonial America & Revolution