My Theodosia
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My Theodosia

3.65 of 5 stars 3.65  ·  rating details  ·  603 ratings  ·  40 reviews
THEODOSIA BURR was borne on the full tide of history. Her short life has all the drama, all the necessary elements of a great historical novel.
Under Anya Seton's guidance, we see Aaron Burr, her father, sitting in his study before the great duel with Alexander Hamilton, and writing that famous letter which began, 'To my dearest Theodosia.' We see Theodosia herself, receiv...more
ebook, 432 pages
Published March 16th 2012 by Mariner Books (first published January 2nd 1900)
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Misfit
A solid first outing for Seton. This book tells the story of Aaron Burr and his daughter Theodosia (Theo). I have to admit I didn't recall much of Burr from history class outside of the duel with Alexander Hamilton. At the start of the book Theo is 17 and Burr is vice president of the United States. Burr plots to have Theo married to the wealthy but uninteresting Joseph Alston of South Carolina. Burr needs some of that money to cover his debts and also the power of the Alstons to gain him politi...more
Mardel Fehrenbach
I loved this book when I was a teenager, and have reread it before this. I wanted to read this book after reading Nancy Isenberg's biography of Aaron Burr, Fallen Founder, partly because the author mentioned at Seton had hinted at incest between Aaron Burr and his daughter, Theodosia.

I still don't see the incest, although I see some mentions of this thought in the mind of Theodosia's rather narrow-minded inlaws. I am inclined to think this view is one primarily promulgated by Phillipa Gregory in...more
Ana T.
Although I have read some of Anya Seton's novels before it was only now that I had the opportunity to read My Theodosia, her first published work. Reading about Theodosia Burr Alston made me realise that I seldom read books about American history and that my knowledge is indeed lacking in that department. Something I started working on as soon as I finished the book because I had to look up every real people mentioned and that I intend to continue by looking for more books with that setting.

Theo...more
Melinda
Our heroine, Theodosia Burr, is the only child of Vice President Aaron Burr (most famous for his duel with Alexander Hamilton). This book which spans from 1800-1812 tells the story of her relationship with her father and his self-serving hold on her. Ultimately, she sacrificed everything because of this devotion. This was Anya Seton's first novel written in 1941 and as always she is a master storyteller. One of the things I like about this author is her knack of making a rather obscure historica...more
Kathy  Petersen
This is an example of why I am so hesitant to read historical fiction, especially those whose characters do have an actual place in the past. Herein we are treated to the most intimate thoughts and secret feelings of real and well-known people from the past ... nonsense.
Ginger
I read all of Anya Seton's books when I was in high school.. Loved all her books..Have found a few I missed--guess my high school didn't have them--that I hope to read.. some still do not have Kindle editions.. Anyone who likes historical fiction would enjoy her books..
Muriel Schwenck
Bittersweet and dramatic. The romance is intense and mystical. Perfect reading for a teenager. I memorized the song featured in the book 30 years ago and still recall it..."Heart of mine, away from thee, sever'd from it only rest,
Tosses as a troubles sea, bound within my aching breast"
Hey, it's better fodder than today's vampire novels.

Many reviews comment on the too close relationship between Theodosia and her father, but it's actually not that strange for it's day, when offspring were expecte...more
Julia
Theodosia Burr is the smart, adoring, seventeen-year-old daughter of Aaron Burr, who was vice-president at a time when one attained the office by being the runner-up in a presidential election. Thus, the president, Thomas Jefferson, is actually his political rival. Having run into both political and financial hardship, Aaron arranges for Theodosia to marry Joseph Alston, a wealthy but unattractive and dull Carolina planter. Shocked that her father would be desperate enough to send her to such a...more
Tania
A fictionalized account of Theodosia Burr Alston, daughter of Aaron Burr, based on documented events of her life including correspondences between father and daughter.

Aaron Burr, a controversial yet important figure in U.S. History, had a very close relationship with his only daughter, Theo. While he wasn't above using even her to his own political and financial advantage, and indeed manipulated her feelings and life at will, in his daughter's eyes he was the perfect father and a man all should...more
Colleen Martin
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Louise
Aaron Burr, the third Vice President of the US, is a difficult figure to fathom. He was wanted for the "murder" of Alexander Hamilton and was never tried for it. He was later was charged with treason and acquitted. History has not been kind to him. A recent work: Fallen Founder: The Life of Aaron Burr makes a good case for his vindication as in some ways Gore Vidal does too in his 1973 fictional work: "Burr: A Novel".

This 1941 novel shows Burr and all his contradictions through his daughter, The...more
Linda
The story was interesting, so the two stars. But for a "meticulously researched" historical novel, there were many inaccuracies. I know it was written in 1941 by a New Yorker, but I was horrified by the racism in all the scenes that involved African Americans, from the the hairdresser who did Theo's hair for her 17th birthday in an early chapter, to the servants of the Burr family, and especially when the story moved to South Carolina to a rice plantation full of slaves. All the worst stereotype...more
Amanda
This was Seton's debut novel, and it definitely sets the tone for how she wrote her later books (Katherine is one I've read). Theodosia is the precocious daughter of Aaron Burr, the only daughter. I could see shades of the Freudian school Seton used in Katherine here as well. It's even recognized by some of the characters, as Theo and her father share an unusually close relationship.

I loved the story and most of Seton's research is impeccable. I will admit that there are many troubling scenes in...more
Kimster
Of course because this is a fictional story based on facts it is a little anti-climatic. It is the story of Theodosia Burr Alston the daughter of Aaron Burr vice-president of our nation who served under President Andrew Jackson. He had ambitions for the presidency and went a little overboard trying to win that race with money and influence. When his money ran out so did his friends. His daughter stood beside him all the way to the end, which I found both irritating and admirable. Everyone needs...more
Beth
The only thing that prevented me from giving it one star is that I finished. I found the writing incredibly dated (I know it was written in the 1940's and set in the 1800's, but I found it unrealistically over the top). When the book was recommended to me, I was told "it's a lovely story about a father-daughter relationship", but I found it more along the lines of "emotional incest". The relationship between Theo and her father disgusted me - she was so blindly devoted to him that it overshadowe...more
Etherealfire
Read the hardcover book in the late 70s. Probably a library book. A well-written historical novel that set me on the path to a bit of an obsession with that genre.
Sharon
"My Theodosia" details the brief life of Theodosia Burr Alston, daughter of Aaron Burr. Picking up on her 17th birthday and continuing until her death at age 30, Anya Seton shows us a picture of a young woman forced into a politically expedient marriage to South Carolinian planter Joseph Alston and away from her love Merriweather Lewis. Seton has researched Theodosia's life using letters, historical documents and diaries and presents a conflicted young woman whose filial piety is used against he...more
Maudie
Superb. Simply Superb. Nearing the end of my Anya Seton reads, I have become fascinated with the oft-times vexing, but ever interesting Theodosia Burr Alston. To my complete surprise, this Seton book that I kept pushing aside because I knew next to nothing about the title character and, frankly, wasn't that interested in meeting on the level that Seton insists a reader do, now sits beside my favorite Seton works: 'Katherine' and 'The Winthorp Woman.'

If you haven't met Miss Burr? Do. I believe y...more
Jaime
What I found most interesting about this book was the depiction of Meriweather Lewis. I remember wishing he'd had more scenes. Theodosia's story was sad but not terribly involving--the men in her life, from her crazy, despotic father (Aaron Burr) to her unrequited lover, Lewis--grabbed more attention just walking across the page; she, herself, remained something of a cypher and therefore, was not as memorable as she should have been in a book where she's the title character.
Karen Hogan
I love Anya Seton. This fictionalized biography of Theodosia Burr was her first novel. I didnt like it as much as her book "Katherine", but it was still good. It was really compelling in parts, but then slow in others. Theodosia's blind obedience to her father's wishes will infuriate you. I enjoyed reading about her plantation life, but felt sad that she married a man she didnt love to please her father. I found myself researching Theodosia Burr after reading this book.

Allie
3.5 stars? I can't decide. I enjoyed the history throughout and all the interesting characters coming up in their own parts, Dolly Madison, Washington Irving and of course Merriwether Lewis.. I look forward to reading more American HF set during this time period. I was never caught up in any of the emotions of the characters nor did Seton make me understand any of the relationships that Theodesia had. However, I still enjoyed it.
Christy
This is more of a 3.5. Not bad, but not as good as some of her other works. Leaves me interested to know more about the Burrs, besides the little I remember of them being mentioned in high school history class. So often her protagonists are just trapped in miserable marriages due to social pressures of their eras, it reminds me why I usually read just one of her books per year as they often have repetitive themes.
Bea
As usual I like Anya Seton's writing. I knew nothing of Aaron Burr and his daughter and found the story interesting, though I liked her other books better because I found this story less compelling. Still enjoyed it though.
Nancy  W'f
Jun 30, 2008 Nancy W'f rated it 2 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of early american history
I was disappointed that the author, who apparently did a lot of research for this book, seems to have gotten most of her facts wrong. I have always enjoyed her work, and it made me wonder if her other books were as inaccurate.
Janet W
Anya Seton's later books are much better. This one was historical fiction. Perhaps the racism and inaccuracies were acceptable when it was published, but it was painful to read.
Jessica
Excellent character, especially considering I'd never heard of her before reading the book. Also a fascinating image of how American life might have been post-Revolution.
Amy
This book felt like it could have been split into 2 or 3 stories. It was interesting, but the story ran too long and the last 100 pages were a slow read.
Cathy
This was interesting, not how sure of it's accuracy historically, but interesting learning more about Aaron Burr.
Pat
Good historical book. Gave an interesting view of early American politics and the egos behind them.
Marj
This was really interesting to read about Aaron Burr, a part of American history I didn't know much about.
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Anya Seton (January 23, 1904 (although the year is often misstated to be 1906 or 1916) - November 8, 1990) was the pen name of the American author of historical romances, Ann Seton.

Ann Seton was born in New York, New York, and died in Old Greenwich, Connecticut. She was the daughter of English-born naturalist and pioneer of the Boy Scouts of America, Ernest Thompson Seton and Grace Gallatin Seton....more
More about Anya Seton...
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