• $11.99

Publisher Description

Karen Abbott, the New York Times bestselling author of Sin in the Second City and “pioneer of sizzle history” (USA Today), tells the spellbinding true story of four women who risked everything to become spies during the Civil War.

Karen Abbott illuminates one of the most fascinating yet little known aspects of the Civil War: the stories of four courageous women—a socialite, a farmgirl, an abolitionist, and a widow—who were spies.

After shooting a Union soldier in her front hall with a pocket pistol, Belle Boyd became a courier and spy for the Confederate army, using her charms to seduce men on both sides. Emma Edmonds cut off her hair and assumed the identity of a man to enlist as a Union private, witnessing the bloodiest battles of the Civil War. The beautiful widow, Rose O’Neale Greenhow, engaged in affairs with powerful Northern politicians to gather intelligence for the Confederacy, and used her young daughter to send information to Southern generals. Elizabeth Van Lew, a wealthy Richmond abolitionist, hid behind her proper Southern manners as she orchestrated a far-reaching espionage ring, right under the noses of suspicious rebel detectives.

Using a wealth of primary source material and interviews with the spies’ descendants, Abbott seamlessly weaves the adventures of these four heroines throughout the tumultuous years of the war. With a cast of real-life characters including Walt Whitman, Nathaniel Hawthorne, General Stonewall Jackson, detective Allan Pinkerton, Abraham and Mary Todd Lincoln, and Emperor Napoleon III, Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy draws you into the war as these daring women lived it.

Liar, Temptress, Soldier, Spy contains 39 black & photos and 3 maps. 

September 2

Customer Reviews

frenchy0674 ,

Great Intrigue, but falls off

I had a difficult time trying to understand & remember who was who, in the 4 main characters, especially as each chapter jumped from one to the other in succession. As I delved deeper into the book, it seemed each that each woman replayed her role again & again, just in different times, places & soldiers. My personal opinion is that the book became monotonous . .

Cadotonic ,

Great Read, Excellent Writer

I had the opportunity to hear Karen on NPR. When I got to work I had an email, from the Filson's Club in Louisville announcing that Karen was going to be there speaking. I signed up, went to hear her, got my "personalized" autographed copy. I read it in about a week, I was not disappointed. Excellent writer, great story teller, my favorite kind of history teacher. A person who can spin a great tale. If you are a history buff, or a civil war buff, this book is for you.

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