Author: Beverly Jenkins
Pages: 356 (Mass Market Paperback)
Release Date: November 7, 1996
Purchase: Amazon•TBD (affiliate link)
Hester Wyatt is a free black woman who harbors runaway slaves. Freedom fighter Black Daniel lands badly beaten on her doorstep. Hester finds herself attracted to the arrogant man. Their time together proves short and his goodbye causes her heartache. But not for long. He returns as Galen Vachon, a wealthy man accustomed to getting what he wants, and he loves and wants Hester. He showers her with gifts and attention, but his elite status means he can never marry her. She was once a slave, her stained indigo hands proof of her lowly status. When a slave catcher threatens them both, the Black Daniel comes to her rescue and forever captures her heart. A love story you won't want to miss; it touches the heart and soul.
Indigo was such a delightful read! I wasn’t quite sure what to expect from a Romance set on the Underground Railroad, but I ended up really enjoying it! Hester is the owner of one of the houses in her communities line of the Railroad. One night she’s brought a family and a gravely injured man, who turns out to be the Black Daniel. The Daniel goes around and takes slaves from their owners and brings them to freedom, but clearly something went wrong this time. Hester nurses him back to health despite his disagreeable personality, but once he’s on the mend, the two start getting close.
The author does an amazing job of using a terrible time in this country’s history for the backdrop of the story. She doesn’t shy away from the tough realities, but she also displays a lot of hope and happiness. Indigo shows us that it wasn’t all gloom and doom. Yes, Hester was a slave and her hands will always mark her as so, but she’s living her life. She’s supporting herself and helping those in need. She’s not bitter and angry (unless the situation calls for it), but she’s also not a doormat. She’s a woman who knows her mind and how to use it. Even when things seem to be going to hell in her community, Hester holds her head high and doesn’t stop doing what she knows is right.
In addition to the Romance, Indigo also has a great mystery type plot. When Galen is well enough, he explains to Hester what happened to him and that he knows there’s a traitor in her town. Obviously, Hester doesn’t want to believe that about her neighbors, but something had to have gone wrong for Galen to have been beaten so badly. This plot thread is dropped for awhile in the middle as the Romance grows, but then it picks up again and I was shocked! The things people will do for love and money!
Indigo was really great. I had never read anything set in this time and place before, so I did learn quite a bit from it. The Romance was sweet and steamy, just how I like it! I also loved how Galen helps Hester have more fun in her life. She takes things entirely too seriously and is resigned to a quiet, passionless life before she meets him. The ending isn’t all sunshine and rainbows. Of course, there’s a happy ending for our couple, but we’re also left with this sense that more needs to be done before everyone gets their happy ending.