Her work for the French and British is rumoured rather than known and Hamit has exercised considerable imagination, positing that her spying before the Mexican War ruined her husband's State Department career and got him sent to Mexico City to examine California land claims that the USA was now bound by treaty to adjudicate. There, he and Rose met Jose Y. Limantour, a slippery French merchant whose claims included half of the City of San Francisco. Limantour and Rose become romantically involved, to Robert Greenhow's distress. He plots revenge upon the Frenchman while also becoming friends with his predecessor at the California Land Commission, Judah P. Benjamin, a brilliant international lawyer from New Orleans who assists him with setting up a private law practice for the Chinese immigrant community. Rose returns to Washington to take care of their daughters, assist his career and promote the Southern Cause with various adventures, including a filibustering attempt to invade Cuba and bring it into the Union as a slave state. She organizes the funding for this expedition which ends in tragedy when all of the invaders are caught, prosecuted and executed. The prosecutor, hired at US Government expense, is Judah P. Benjamin. Benjamin is then elected as a U.S. Senator and becomes very powerful.
Robert Greenhow continues to frustrate Limantour's land claims while becoming involved with the beautiful women who are teaching him Chinese. One night he is attacked and almost killed, and then apparently dies a few weeks later. Judah Benjamin secures a wrongful death settlement from the City of San Francisco and then a huge payout for Robert's salary, expenses, and pension from the U.S. Government.
Now an attractive widow, Rose uses her connections and power to become the Queen of Washington during the Buchanan Administration, which is filled with traitors trying to aide the Southern Cause. When the Civil War finally comes, after Lincoln is elected , she remains in place, spying for the South. She is soon caught and placed under house arrest and later put in the Old Capitol Prison with her eight year old daughter, who is Limantour's child. Released ten months later and sent to Richmond, she finds that the head of the Confederate Secret Service is none other than Judah P. Benjamin.
Francis Hamit said, "These are the plot points that threw this story into the Alternative History genre rather than straight historical fiction. There is no evidence at all that Robert Greenhow had anything to to with the Chinese community or had two beautiful Chinese mistresses. But I needed a way for him to be seduced by the British Secret Service. His book about Oregon and California was a critical document in the boundary settlement and it made sense for them to want to neutralize him in some way. This is a book about seduction as well as spying and geo-politics. Rose is seduced by Limantour, who seems to be just a con man out to make a buck off his outrageous claims, so Robert, who is very distressed by the state of his marriage and lonely, is offered the ultimate honey-trap when he starts doing legal representation for a Chinese tong from Hong Kong -- which the British have acquired in the First Opium War. The British Secret Service was the most adept, widespread and ruthless intelligence operation in the world at that time, well versed in the use of "soft power" including sexual relations. The presence of Judah P. Benjamin, who was a U.S, Senator, then successively Attorney General, Secretary of War and Secretary of State for the Confederate Government, but always head of its Secret Service, led me to wonder where his true loyalties lay. He was born in the British West Indies and, according to a 1907 biography, always considered himself a British Subject even while serving in these other governments. He never took an Oath of Allegiance and refused appointment to the Supreme Court twice, which would have required it. He was also the only member of the Confederate Cabinet to escape at the war's end; he went on to have a brilliant legal career in Britain. These facts are what intelligence analysts call 'indicators'. I did inquire at the UK's Public Records Office in Kew about whether or not he was a British spy, but they said they couldn't help me with that."
Hamit added, "We've gotten great reviews for this book. It's priced slightly lower than the print editions because we recognize that a virtual edition does not involved paper and ink and shipping, but most of our price goes for distribution, with the online bookstores making more than we do net. We do need to make something for all the work that's gone into this exciting novel. We hope you'll enjoy it."
For further information contact Francis Hamit at 1-661-242-1686 or by email at francishamit@