I recently went to see Hamilton: An American Musical, and loved it. So I spent last month’s credit on Alex and Eliza, a fictionalized retelling of the romance of Alexander Hamilton and Elizabeth Schuyler.
Their romance shaped a nation. The rest was history.
1777. Albany, New York.
As battle cries of the American Revolution echo in the distance, servants flutter about preparing for one of New York society’s biggest events: the Schuylers’ grand ball. Descended from two of the oldest and most distinguished bloodlines in New York, the Schuylers are proud to be one of their fledgling country’s founding families, and even prouder still of their three daughters—Angelica, with her razor-sharp wit; Peggy, with her dazzling looks; and Eliza, whose beauty and charm rival that of both her sisters, though she’d rather be aiding the colonists’ cause than dressing up for some silly ball.
Still, she can barely contain her excitement when she hears of the arrival of one Alexander Hamilton, a mysterious, rakish young colonel and General George Washington’s right-hand man. Though Alex has arrived as the bearer of bad news for the Schuylers, he can’t believe his luck—as an orphan, and a bastard one at that—to be in such esteemed company. And when Alex and Eliza meet that fateful night, so begins an epic love story that would forever change the course of American history.
I haven’t read many of de la Cruz’s books. In fact, to my knowledge, I’d only read one – The Au Pairs. So I was going into this with a skewed understanding of the story (thanks, Lin Manuel Miranda) and little knowledge of what was to come.
To be honest, though, while this book was fun to listen to, I doubt it was at all accurate. And, honestly, if you’re going to fictionalise like that, why not just go the whole hog and write a fiction book?
There was nothing I abjectly disliked about this book. It was a fun and interesting romance which talked a lot about societal pressure, set against the backdrop of the American revolutionary war. All good, but nothing really brilliant. And the characters being historical figures and the subject of the hottest show on Broadway and in the West End probably detracts from this more than adds to it.
Altogether, inoffensive but forgettable.