Rhode Island Rendezvous

Written by Linda Collison
Review by Cynthia Slocum

This third book in the Patricia MacPherson Nautical Adventure Series takes place during the years leading up to the American Revolution. Patricia has a secret: she has been living in disguise as a man for three years. When Patrick MacPherson, her masculine persona, becomes shipmaster of the schooner Andromeda, she is delighted about the opportunity to earn a larger share of the profits from sailing cargo to Havana and smuggling goods and Spanish silver coin back into Rhode Island.

An accomplished seaman and surgeon, Patricia has the requisite ability to manage the ship. However, the voyage presents risks she has never before faced. Nature’s unbridled fury confronts her small boat, and other potential dangers greet her in Havana, including a life-or-death situation that tests her surgical skills. Meanwhile, vehement colonial protests against the unpopular Stamp Act have the British Navy on alert for and dealing harshly with smugglers. Unbeknownst to her, Patricia is on course for a tumultuous rendezvous with someone significant from her past. And in a tragic twist of fate, she finds herself wanted by the British authorities on a more serious charge than smuggling.

The story, interwoven with historical persons and events, vividly depicts the colonists of Rhode Island at a time when the Sons of Liberty movement was beginning to gain momentum. Precise descriptions of sailing a schooner lend verisimilitude, as do specific details of medical procedures Patricia performs. Adventure is ever-present, and romance figures prominently. As this absorbing tale ends, it introduces a compelling new hook for the next episode in the series.