The American Revolution brings to mind General George Washington and his men battling the British Red Coats. But enslaved and free black soldiers fought heroically against the British as early as 1770, including Crispus Attucks, an American stevedore, who was widely regarded as the first person killed in the Boston Massacre. Enslaved Africans fought on both sides of the conflict; historians believe as many as 9,000 blacks had combative and supportive roles during the Revolution, making up about 4 percent of the Continental Army’s forces, yet their contribution has been ignored for generations.
In acclaimed author Chris Formant’s new novel, SAVING WASHINGTON: The Forgotten Story of the Maryland 400 and The Battle of Brooklyn (Permuted Press; February 19, 2019; $27), one of his central characters is a young black man named Ben, who, along with his friend Josh, become part of the Maryland militia. “I created the character of Ben to pay homage to the heroic men who were instrumental in fighting for many of the freedoms we have today. Slaves were instrumental in numerous battles during the American Revolution’s eight-year conflict and yet their participation is rarely recognized, let alone honored,” Formant said.
In this epic adventure based on scholarly research, two young aspiring Baltimore merchants, one white and one black, march to Brooklyn as part of the Maryland militia. Undertrained and under-equipped, they would soon be on the front lines of one of the most decisive battles for American independence. Formant immerses readers in their dedication and sacrifice as he weaves an epic tale, which includes actual historical figures. These all but forgotten men who held back the British, made it possible for Washington to evacuate hundreds of soldiers to Manhattan and create a new military strategy that turned the tide of the Revolutionary War. SAVING WASHINGTONhas already captured the attention of filmmakers and has been optioned by the Emmy Award-winning producer of HBO’s Big Little Lies and Deadwood.
CHRIS FORMANT is a student of history and former top executive of a multi-billion-dollar global business and now technology company CEO. His debut novel, Bright Midnight, received lavish praise and has been dubbed the “Da Vinci Code for Rock and Roll Fans.” In the book, Formant created a mystery in which he re-imagined the deaths of rock icons as murders. Chris splits his time between Baltimore, Maryland and Sedona, Arizona. For more information, please visit: https://www.chrisformant.com/