I got How Beautiful They Were, by, Boston Teran from BookSirens for a fair and honest review.

The reason why I decided to read this book was because of the Synopsis as the idea of a book set in an era and a location that I would not normally read. The idea of a book about the after effects of a murder plus the problems of slavery and prejudice,  in the north just before the civil war,


The book is set in the America, of the 19th century, before the American civil war, although it is set around the story of Nathaniel Luck a British actor, who is forced to leave Britain because he is in danger of being arrested for murder.

When Nathaniel reaches America he has an introduction to meat the sister of his drunken adviser from London. Who has suffered from her own tragedy and asks him, to see if they can bring her son back after he had runaway after the death of his bother and father in a fire, believed to have some connection with Astor.


In one way this story is a story about an actor who moves to the US to run away form being arrested for murder. However the book is more than that.

As this is America before the Civil War, slavery is still legal in the south and a big deal in the North, with the underground railroad, helping blacks escape slavery

Even in the North where silvery is illegal there are slave hunters who are trying to capture slaves who are runaways and take them back for the bounty. In addition there are places were blacks can not go either in certain hotels or be on stage as an actor.

What the book did really well was build on atmosphere of the place and the era, with the attitudes of the people and the language used fitted in with the era it was set in.

One weakness for me was the size of the chapters they were none that were one page or even shorter, in the book but I think the longest were 6 pages. I know this is the modern trend in books so people can read here and there, and still fit a chapter in.

But for me I was just getting into a chapter, just because it come to an end.

Another thing that I enjoyed about the book was seeing the standard of writing and they was the ocasiony passage from the book when reading them made me as a reader enjoy that  writing some examples are:

This on is about how it feels like when an a play has finished its run:-

They went from on drunken memory to another, holding on as best they could to what was already gone. They were grasping for the beauty that had already escaped their being. The joy, the Passion, the connection with the audience already gone.

The second is when Nathaniel asked Jeremiah, what it is like to be black.

“Imagine” Jeremiah said, “being made to lie on the road, And everyone who passes stops to piss on you. Even the few that don’t you are unsure. You lay there and lay there just like your father before never dries ‘cause you can’t figure a way to stand while keepin’ alive so the sun light can get at it”

I did like the ending which I will not go into to much detail, here but  it was in keeping with the story.

Who would I recommend this book

There are a number of types of people who I feel would get something out of reading How Beautiful They Where, which would include people who like books set in a theatre or America of the early 19th century or even those who like a good thriller in a different situation to one that would be normally read.

About Boston Teran

Boston Teran is the internationally acclaimed author of twelve novels, many of them translated into foreign languages. He has been named alongside great American writers like Hemingway and Larry McMurtry, as well as filmmakers John Ford and Sam Peckinpah, for his singular voice and ability to weave timely social and political themes into sweeping page turners that pierce straight into America’s soul. GOD IS A BULLET, currently in film development, is considered a cult classic that has been compared to such seminal works as Joan Didion’s THE WHITE ALBUM and John Ford’s THE SEARCHERS.

Taken fromthe authors website

Other books by Boston Teran

Comment bellow if you have read, How Beautiful They where or any others by Boston Teran.

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