Have you ever read a book or books you would consider 'toxic' because of the effect it (they) had on you?
Absolutely not. I don't think I would ever describe a book in such a way. I am very open-minded as a reader and always willing to pick up books that tackle uncomfortable subjects or express points of view different from my own. I would never vilify a book simply because I don't agree with the writer's (or a character's, as the case may be) stance. One of the reasons I read is to broaden my horizons.
Hester killed her first man at Castle Bryher.
From page 56:
It would be easier to trust him with her life if she could divine even the vaguest notion of his intentions.
Wellington is in secret captivity in the Scilly Isles and the Cornish are threatening to join forces with France against the English. Against this tumultuous backdrop, Hester Harewood manages to escape from the French soldiers who have killed her black sea captain father. Her rescuer – Jack 'Crow' Crowlas – takes her to shelter with his aristocratic family in London.
But soon they are embroiled in a web of treachery and espionage, as plans are laid to free Wellington and lead an uprising against the French occupation. Meanwhile, Crow's younger brother throws in his lot with the Cornish rebels and threatens to bring Hester and Crow's elaborate plans crashing down, as this spellbinding story builds towards its violent and gripping endgame.