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Worthy Brown's Daughter

by Phillip Margolin

Worthy Brown's Daughter by Phillip Margolin X
Worthy Brown's Daughter by Phillip Margolin
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  • Published in USA  Jan 2014
    352 pages
    Genre: Historical Fiction

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Power Reviewer
Betty Taylor

I received an advance copy of this book from The Reading Room (Harper Collins).

Let me say right up front that I am a fan of Phillip Margolin. However, this book is very different from his other books as this one is set in the 1800s in Oregon. Worthy Brown is a freed black man, as result of the new laws in Oregon. However, his former master refused to set Worthy's daughter free. Young attorney Matthew Penny, newly arrived in Oregon, is still grief-stricken over the loss of his beloved wife on the journey to Oregon. But an encounter with Miss Heather Gillette causes him to feel a spark of life again. Then there is Sharon Hill, the consummate actress. She is able to manipulate the strongest of men. The combination of these characters and some less major ones creates a drama that is hard to break yourself away from.

While a fan of Margolin, I couldn't imagine him writing a western! But it grabbed me almost from the very beginning. It is an easy and quick read which is what I needed right now. I loved this book
Power Reviewer
Diane S.

Worthy Brown's Daughter
Portland, Oregon is the 1860's is a typical frontier town, a place where things are not very easy. Yet, Matthew seizes the opportunity to relocate there from the east, and he and his wife join the wagons heading over the Oregon Trail. Matthew makes it to Oregon, his wife does not.

Once in Oregon,Matthew who is a lawyer becomes embroiled in a few cases over a property dispute and lands on the wrong side of a man, who does not easily forgive. He also decides to undertake the lawsuit of a negro, the said Worthy, whose daughter in still being held as a slave even though slaves are illegal in Oregon.

Margolin has written legal thrillers for many years so he knows his way around a courtroom. and this one is loosely based on a true incident. Really enjoyed Matthew's character and the rough and tumble of this western town. The corruption and graft, violence never far from the core. It was very unusual for a white man at that time to take on the defense of a black man, yet it was done.

There were a couple of subplots that I felt were not really necessary, taking away from the main plot which was very interesting. Also at the end Matthew's new love interest lectures Worthy's daughter, about doing something with her life rather than being a servant something I did not like and could have been left out. All in all a good solid read.
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