Goodreads Review: Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy: Four Women Undercover in the Civil War by Karen Abbott

Four star review, originally posted here on January 20, 2018.

This was a new angle for me for looking at the Civil War. The book focuses on 4 specific and separate stories, alternating between them but following along roughly chronologically for the duration of the war. I was particularly enticed because most of the stories were somewhat local for me, with the majority of action happening in Virginia and DC. Comparing and contrasting the 4 women was particularly interesting to me, especially contrasting their motives. Who acted on behalf of their side’s cause, versus who acted on on behalf of themselves? How were they viewed by those around them? Etc.

I would like to read a sequel, or to have had added storylines to this book, that followed black female spies as well. We hear a little bit about a couple black accomplices in this book, mostly servants/slaves of our white heroines who did some amazing shit on their own, and it would be interesting to have heard more about their contributions, particularly since they had much more to gain or lose and ran much bigger risks if caught.


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