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Judd has expanded a little-known footnote to Civil War history into a gripping saga of valor, betrayal, and brutality. Before the eruption of formal hostilities between the North and the South, there were pockets of staunch Union loyalists in the hills and mountains of western North Carolina and eastern Tennessee. After their states seceded, many of those steadfast and determined mountaineers continued to operate as covert supporters of the Union cause. Estranged from her rabidly secessionist father, Amy Deacon risks her life to help runaway slaves escape by the Underground Railroad. Later, she serves as a spy and accepts a dangerous mission to smuggle counterfeit Confederate currency into Knoxville. Despite the forlorn odds, Amy and her allies continue to wage a clandestine war of sabotage and resistance, culminating in the savage massacre of Unionists in Shelton Laurel, North Carolina, in 1862. This stirring tribute to the unsung heroes of a fierce mountain campaign will leave readers eagerly anticipating the next two installments in Judd's Mountain War trilogy. Margaret Flanagan