Thursday, August 25, 2016

Tillie Pierce: Teen Eyewitness to the Battle of Gettysburg - a review

Tillie Pierce: Teen Eyewitness to the Battle of Gettysburg

By Tanya Anderson
Quindaro Press, 2016

I wondered why I was getting an "Early Reviewer" copy of a book that was originally published in 2013.  Quindaro Press has reissued the book as a paperback with "French flaps" - sturdy,gatefold flyleafs. They keep the original dust jacket information available, they can be used for bookmarking, and they make the book sturdier.

Tillie Pierce is a short and compelling account of a week in a life of a teen girl who lived in Gettysburg during the Battle of Gettysburg.  Author Tanya Anderson uses many of Tillie Pierce's own words*, but mixes them with a more modern-style narrative, and includes photographs, maps, and background information.  Words that are archaic or might be unfamiliar, e.g., caissons, consumption, accoutrement, are defined parenthetically.  (I prefer footnoting, but parenthetical makes for easier reading).

As you might expect from writer Tanya Anderson, the research is commendable.  The book includes: Bibliography, Black-and-White Photographs,  Further Reading, Glossary, Index, Photo Captions, Source Notes, Table of Contents, Timeline.  There are even step-by-step instructions to use Google Earth to follow the exact path that Tillie took from her home to a neighboring farmhouse which became a de facto military hospital.

If you haven't read Tillie Pierce yet, take advantage of this new edition to read or purchase it.  You won't be disappointed. You can check out its many starred reviews and awards here: Reviews and Awards for Tillie Pierce: Teen Eyewitness to the Battle of Gettysburg  If you're a history teacher, I can't think of a more exciting way to interest teens in history than to let them experience it through the eyes of another teen.

Finally, a note on the publisher, Quindaro: After more than ten years in the publishing business, Quindaro has a new mission.  They have committed to focusing on the YA market, publishing nonfiction designed "to engage the next generation of readers in history." I look forward to seeing their future offerings, and am hoping to review a copy of the upcoming Gunpowder Girls, also by Tanya Anderson.

*Tillie wrote her own book titled, At Gettysburg or What a Girl Saw and Heard of the Battle: A True Narrative.

My copy of Tillie Pierce: Teen Eyewitness to the Battle of Gettysburg was provided by LibraryThing Early Reviewers program


  1. Thanks, Lisa, for sharing this info. I have seen the original book (I went to Gettysburg College and I return to the town and campus several times a year--wonderful bookstores there) but I hadn't heard a thing about this one. I will definitely look for it!

    1. How nice that Gettysburg still has bookstores! It's a pity how quickly they're disappearing. The new version is classy for a paperback and pretty sturdy, too. :)

  2. Thank you so much, Lisa, for your kind review. I'm so happy to have Tillie's story available in softcover for more readers to find. Your review made my day!


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