This book is a prequel to the wildly popular Bronze Horseman trilogy, a series I enjoyed a lot despite the need for a red-pencil guy (book #3 went on and on and on). Readers familiar with the back history of Alexander's parents have an expectation of what they're likely to find in this book, so I won't spoil for those new to the story. Unfortunately, this book ends where it should have been started, and I hear that there's at least one more book in the works to tell the story that fans of these books are waiting to read; a story that you aren't going to get in this book.Children of Liberty begins in 1899 with the immigrant Attaviano family arriving in Boston Harbor to start a new life in America, and almost fifteen-year-old Gina is full of hope and promise. Harry Barrington and his friend Ben offer their assistance to the family (Harry's father owns several apartment houses that cater to Italian immigrants). The Attaviano family begin their new life with family (cousin? aunt?) in a nearby town, while Harry returns to his privileged life in Boston. The bulk of the book then alternates between dinner party after dinner party at Harry's family home with endless conversations talking about politics and socialism, and the struggles of Gina and her family to make a go of things, and whether or not Gina should work or go to school.*Yawn*I'm the kind of reader that prefers a story to start when there's something interesting happening, and then backtrack and fill in the gaps. In this case, the book should have been started at page 375 and moved on from there (but then that's one less book to be sold). While I admire an author who uses dialog to set up the story instead of endless info dumps, the dialog here and the discussions contained therein were endless and mind-numbing. The same discussions over and over and over and over again, for almost 375 pages of this 422 page book. Add to this misery two of the most unlikable characters I've come across since those gawd-awful 50 Shades books. Harry is dull as dishwater and a spineless ninny to boot. Gina was a teenager for most of the book (we all know what teenagers are like), and she wastes no time in lying to her family and the nuns at school and sneaking out with a friend to meet the much older Harry and Ben in Boston. Perhaps they'll grow up and be more sympathetic characters in the next book, but you won't find much to care about here. Library only, then buy it if you love it.