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Letters from the Gardener takes place in the time that Dickens called the best and the worst of times. During the French Revolution, Belfast was awash with republican ideals. The Scotch-Irish Presbyterians allied with the Catholics to form the United Irishmen.
Into this cauldron come John Dean, a Scottish gardener, and his wife Susan Kirk, a former English lady. John works for Henry Joy, the editor of the Belfast News-Letter, and writes letters to his friends with the news of the day in Ulster. His wife Susan meets Joy's nephew and namesake Henry Joy McCracken and his sister Mary Ann, and the lives of John, his wife and their children become entwined with the McCrackens. Susan falls in love with the handsome revolutionary McCracken and falls under the spell of Mary Ann's feminist ideas.
The birth of twins and the growing unrest in Ireland after England declares war on France spur John to insist on emigration to the New World, but not before he confronts his wife's "lover" and learns the truth.

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