Laura's Blog


- by Laura Malone Elliott

April 16, 2018

As much as everyone adored Sarah’s cover with the model, there was one more consideration to make: would fans of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s brilliant Hamilton make the immediate connection between the musical and the subject of my novel given the visuals of the cover.

In complete honesty, I would not have thought to research Peggy Schuyler’s life had Miranda not introduced us to her or had my editor Katherine Tegen not recognized America’s thirst to know more about the minor characters the musical can only touch on briefly. It’s staggering how much history and how many important figures Miranda was able to include in 90 minutes. But out of necessity Peggy is limited to 36 solo words.

In Hamilton, Miranda salutes his musical heroes and incfluences, directly quoting or riffing on the lyrics or musical phrases of well-known stars like the Beatles, Jason Robert Brown, Biggie, Rogers and Hammerstein, Beyonce and Jay Z. And so it seemed totally appropriate—even required—to pay the same kind of homage with PEGGY’s cover.

And so, Sarah graciously circled back to her original concept, inspired by the silhouettes of the 18th century and Hamilton’s billboards. She changed the color tones and recut Peggy’s figure so she is gesturing to the wonderful subhead, that assistant editor Mabel Hsu came up with: A Revolutionary Friendship. A bit of a journey for Sarah, but a beautiful ending, for which I am very grateful! This is the closest I can get to a standing ovation for her!



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