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Hearts Set Free

Elaine Blick

Grant and Debra are renovating their country cottage when they find a packet of love letters that have lain hidden behind a fireplace for over two hundred years. Debra reads them and learns the secrets of Clara, a woman married to a slave-owner in Bristol, living on the wealth of his sugar plantation in Jamaica.

In the late eighteenth century there is an outcry in England against slavery in the British colonies. It is led by such people as John Wesley, who has a strong influence on William Wilberforce. Clara hears Wesley preach a scorching sermon against slavery in which he accuses all those involved in the slave trade of having blood on their hands. Deeply troubled and concerned for her husband's eternal destiny, Clara urges him to free his slaves.
As Debra reads the letters she becomes increasingly involved in Clara's situation, so much so that her relationship with Grant takes second place. The effect on their marriage is critical

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Elaine Blick was born in Salisbury, England and moved to New Zealand when she was five. She trained as a teacher and holds an MA degree from Auckland University. She also obtained a Diploma in Journalism at Canterbury University and wrote a number of freelance articles. In the 1970s she moved to London where she taught English at a comprehensive school until she retired. Now she lives in Auckland at a beach on the Manukau Harbour. In this tranquil setting she has written five novels and has now embarked on her sixth. She runs a film club that specialises in literary classics and is also a member of a local golf club.