This historical romance, set in mid-nineteenth century New England, Hawaii, Paris and Florence, Italy, follows James Jackson Jarves, and his wife Elizabeth Swain through the turmoil of Hawai’i’s move to independence, the escape of slaves to the North before the Civil War, and eventually the couple’s settling in Paris and Florence where Jarves becomes an art collector. The first volume, told from Libby’s point of view, is a story of marriage gone sour, and Libby’s loss of her dearest friend, her cousin Jamie Bernard, who is shot helping an escaped slave.
In volume two, The Art Factor and His Wife, James Jarves develops a passion for collecting late medieval and early Renaissance art. This will consume him for the remainder of his life. Independent of her husband, Libby and her daughter Chevie become embroiled in Italy’s fight for independence from Austria.
Libby finds happiness with an Italian fighter for freedom.