Alex and Eliza (Alex & Eliza, #1)

Alex and Eliza (Alex & Eliza, #1)

First Lines: Like a latter-day Greek temple, the Schuyler family mansion sat atop a softly rounded hill outside Albany.

Honestly, I don’t know why it took me so long to read this. Like most people, I adored Hamilton. I’ve read other Alexander and Eliza stories, but this one was always on the back end for me. Maybe because I haven’t had the best track record with Melissa de la Cruz, but I was still willing to try it.

It’s 1777 and the Schuylers are throwing a ball. One of the oldest and grandest families in New York, the Schuylers are proud to be a founding family and even prouder of their three daughters: the witty Angelica, the dazzling Peggy, and the patriotic Eliza. When they receive word that Alexander Hamilton, George Washington’s right hand man, will be at the party, Eliza can barely contain her excitement. If only he weren’t bringing bad news with him. Alex can’t believe his luck. From his humble beginnings to a guest at the Schuylers’ ball, Alex loves being in such exalted company. And when Alex meets Eliza, well…

For me, it was…slow. This is in part because I’m already so familiar with their story. The beginning sets up a LOT of their backstories, how Eliza’s from a wealthy patriotic family, how Alexander was a penniless orphan when he came to America, things like that. After they met, things took off a bit more because there wasn’t so much exposition anymore. However, near the end of the story, I felt like the pace slowed down again.

What I enjoyed about this was the tension between Alex and Eliza early in their courtship. Alex is smitten with this defiant, beautiful young woman, but Eliza only sees in him the man who is court-martialing her father for the fall of Ticonderoga. So that tension, while it lasted, was humorous and fun.

They are good characters, both of them. Eliza’s patriotism shines through, as does Alex’s ambition. Other characters are also quite fun, like the ones we’re familiar with from the musical (Peggy, Angelica, Laurens). Perhaps my favorite, though, was Aunt Gertrude, the aunt Eliza stays with in Morristown, NJ. Oh my, was she fun. And because I didn’t know her from the musical, her character was entirely new to me and quite interesting.

Truly, I do really think my biggest problem with this was that I knew too much already. There just wasn’t as much of a thrill for me to be reading about them going through some of these things (particularly that ending…) because I already knew more or less how things would turn out. I knew the characters and their particular quirks along with the ultimate fates of many of them.

Still, I won’t say I didn’t enjoy seeing another take on these two. It just wasn’t what I hoped for.

One thought on “Alex and Eliza (Alex & Eliza, #1)

  1. I also enjoyed this story, but like you found it a little slow. I still need to read the final one in the series, but I like it when I just need a familiar, yet new story

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