My new book, Charity and Sylvia: A Same-Sex Marriage in Early America, is now available for sale on Kindle.

Charity and Sylvia book cover

Publisher’s Weekly calls the book “beautifully written” and “an utterly absorbing love story.” Read the full review here.

Charity and Sylvia is the tale of two ordinary women who lived in an extraordinary same-sex marriage in early nineteenth-century Vermont. The product of nearly a decade of research and writing, Charity and Sylvia uses diaries, letters, poems, and other primary source records to tell the intimate story of a relationship that revolutionizes our understanding of the history of marriage. I am elated finally to be able to share with readers the women’s story. I hope you will fall in love with Charity and Sylvia just as I have.

Tom Foster, author of Sex and the Founding Fathers: The American Quest for a Relatable Past describes the book as “beautifully written and thoroughly researched. The story is poignant and full of surprises. The book’s examination of the lives of Charity and Sylvia is well supported by a rich and deep body of evidence. I couldn’t put it down.”

Carol Lasser, at Oberlin College, writes “[Cleves] has done an extraordinary job in putting together analysis and narrative to tell the story of how two women maintained their loving partnership with the support of family, friends and community, some 200 years before same-sex marriage won acceptance in major parts of the United States…In the end, the very ordinariness of the lives of these women who struggled to support themselves, to love each other, and to play upstanding roles in church and community, suggests how those who challenge social and religious norms can reshape the expectations of themselves, and those around them. Charity and Sylvia emerge from these pages as vibrant people in whose lives the readers become interested. We want to know them, and the author brings them to life for us.”

Please check out Charity and Sylvia in the Kindle store, and if you enjoy it, don’t forget to spread the word!

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