Deeply moving and illuminating, Rebecca Bruff‘s Trouble the Water reveals the little-known real-life story of Robert Smalls. Born enslaved before the Civil War, Smalls witnesses great privilege and immense suffering alongside his owner’s daughter and the dangerous son of a firebrand secessionist. When he’s only twelve, he’s put to work in Charleston, where he loads ships and learns to pilot a cotton steamer. When the war erupts and his cotton steamer becomes a confederate warship, Robert attempts a harrowing escape to freedom for himself and the people he loves.
PRAISE AND RECOGNITION:
- FIRST PLACE/ GOLD WINNER IN 2020 FEATHERED QUILL AWARDS FOR DEBUT NOVEL
- FIRST PLACE/ GOLD WINNER IN 2020 FEATHERED QUILL AWARDS FOR ADULT FICTION
- FIRST PLACE/ GOLD WINNER OF AMERICANBOOKFEST FICTION AWARD
“With this stunning debut novel, Rebecca Bruff establishes herself as an exciting new voice in historical fiction.” –Cassandra King Conroy, author of Moonrise, and Founding Honorary Chair of the Pat Conroy Literary Center
“Debut author Rebecca Bruff has made her mark with this exceptional examination of family, freedom, and what it really means to fight for the light.” ~ Julie Cantrell, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Perennials
Rebecca Bruff’s poignant portrayal of Robert Smalls is uplifting, engaging and inspiring. Her words flowed across the page as seamlessly and effortlessly as Smalls’ sailing across the Charleston Harbor to freedom. This man was a hero and his story is largely unknown. Now, more than ever, this part of our history needs to be told, read, and understood. And I’m so thankful to Bruff for bringing it into the forefront. ~ Cele and Lynn Seldon, authors of 100 Things to Do in Charleston Before You Die
“I loved returning to the lowcountry, and my god, that writing toward the end about the tides: ‘When the tide is out, all the way out, you can smell creation..’ That passage made me breathless.” ~ Robin Oliveira, author of New York Times bestseller My Name is Mary Sutter
Author visits with Rebecca Bruff are available via NovelNetwork.com.