Seahawk Burning


During the latter stages of the American Civil War, from 1863 to 1865, Captain Ralph Semmes of the C.S.S. Alabama terrorizes the North’s shipping and whaling industry. He tries to prevent raw materials from reaching the shores of the North, thereby helping the Southern cause while capturing and destroying Northern ships. While he is at sea, his girlfriend Maude Galway is on the run from Pinkerton agents. Because of her association with convicted spy Rose Greenhow, Maude is suspected of spying for the South along with conspiring to kill President Lincoln.

This novel is loosely based on the true story of Captain Semmes of the Confederate navy, an assassination conspiracy involving key government leaders in Washington, and the attempt made by Captain John Winslow of the U.S.S. Kearsarge to capture and destroy the Alabama. Other real-life supporting characters include the Secretary of the Navy Gideon Wells and a leader of the Underground Railroad, Harriet Tubman.

This is the third and final book in the trilogy chronicling the adventures of Captain Semmes and his exploits during the American Civil War. The research is well documented, with intriguing factual and fictional characters involved in a plot to assassinate President Lincoln. Prepare to be immersed in a page-turner with end-of-chapter cliffhangers. I would recommend reading the first two novels first, primarily because of the character development of Captain Semmes and Maud, along with the supporting cast of players in this exciting spy and war novel series. Highly recommended.

Share this review

Buy "The Beggar at the Gate & Other Stories" for £2.05 (Kindle edition)

12 of the best stories selected from the 2012 Historical Novel Society Short Story Award




, ,



(US) $24.95

(US) 9781440533167




Appeared in

Reviewed by