Book Description (via Goodreads): Deseré, a skilled seamstress and slave, lives on a South Carolina cotton plantation. Fair-skinned and astonishingly beautiful, she is owned by a kindly master and given his permission to marry the man she loves, a carpenter enslaved on a neighbouring plantation yet when her master dies before her wedding and his nephew inherits the plantation and it’s slaves, Deseré’s marriage is indefinitely postponed, pending consent from her new owner. Lawyer Anthony Sinclair arrives from Ohio on the mend from a broken heart, leaving behind a career derailed by scandal. Owning a plantation presents a vibrant opportunity. Yet torn by inklings of abolitionists beliefs, Anthony struggles with the damning prospects of owning human beings. Upon first seeing the alluring Deseré, Anthony is immediately dazzled by her golden skin, shimmering blond hair and ocean blue eyes. Yet Deseré perceives the tall, dark-haired and handsome “Masta” Anthony as rather stupid. He knows nothing about running a plantation, not being a planter. But as long as he allows Deseré to marry the man she loves, she will be happy. Anthony, however, desires Deseré for himself. To what lengths will he go to win the forbidden love of a slave? Will owning Deseré be the only way Anthony can ever possess her while her heart belongs to another man?
I received this book in exchange for an honest review. I have given Deseré: A Love Story of the American South by Maria McKenzie three out of five stars ⭐️⭐️⭐️
The history behind this story was compelling, which I found very interesting to learn about, especially the wicked and awful ways some of. the slaves were treated by plantation owners. It’s obvious that Maria McKenzie did a lot of research to complete this book and it definitely made the book better for that exact reason. I always enjoy a book more when you can tell just how much research and passion has gone into it.
I found it rather difficult to get into the flow of this book as there were some scenes that I found myself having to re-read over. However, I have spent the past week and a bit moving into our first new home so my mind has been preoccupied with other thoughts which could have been clouding my mind.
Deseré is a very strong, beautiful and brave young woman whom I admired quite a bit, after some of her actions she chose to play in the book. I found Anthony’s character mysterious at first, soon to be interesting and whom I ended up growing to love. The other main characters are well-developed and detailed who also embark on the adventures of a dramatic, love story.
I found this story well-written, thoughtful and well researched.
I would definitely recommend to read this book if you’re a fan of historical fiction.