Book Review: Our Man in Charleston: Britain’s Secret Agent in the Civil War South, by Christopher Dickey

Our Man in Charleston: Britain's Secret Agent in the Civil War SouthOur Man in Charleston: Britain’s Secret Agent in the Civil War South by Christopher Dickey

Print Length: 410 pages

  • Publisher: Crown (July 21, 2015)
  • Publication Date: July 21, 2015
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B00OWWC25S
  • My Rating: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

    About The Author:

    Award-winning author CHRISTOPHER DICKEY, the foreign editor of The Daily Beast, is based in France. Previously he was the Paris bureau chief and the Middle East editor for Newsweek. He served as Cairo bureau chief for the Washington Post and, before that, as the paper’s Central America bureau chief. His books include the acclaimed memoir Summer of Deliverance as well as Securing the City, Expats, With the Contras, and two novels about espionage and terrorism.

    My Review:

    This is the story of Robert Bunch, the British government’s consul in Charleston, South Carolina, before the start of the civil war. I have never read such chilling accounts of the slave industry as I did in this book. To know that even after it had been banned in the south a ship was confiscated and proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that it was carrying what was left of four hundred plus Africans to America, it was treated as a nonoccurrence.

    After reading these secret memos that Robert Bunch sent back to England, you can understand the distaste for the south that he conveyed. He had seen into the deepest darkest aspect of life in Charleston. He had been privy to the leader’s inner workings and their flawed decisions about human trafficking.

    When the Echo was brought into Charleston’s harbor, the city was given a birdseye view of the destruction, horrors, and inhumanity of slavery. Yet, when given an opportunity to prosecute the perpetrators, aka the ship owners, they were let go by the leaders of the legal system in Charleston. This shines a different light on what we in the south were told about slavery and Northern aggression. The north was not left out of the slavery problem as they were many times the owners and builders of these slave ships. Ships built to hide hundreds of illegally acquired Africans.

    Bunch was in the thick of things in Charleston and he saw things that many were not able to see. Sending dispatches back to England allowed them to have inside knowledge of the slave mentality of the Southern states and America​ in general. Written in an easy to understand manner, I was pulled into the history of the prewar south.
    An excellent read that encapsulates the real reasons behind that war and why Great Britain was so staunchly anti-confederacy. I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

    My Recommendation:

    I can highly recommend this well crafted and researched book to anyone that wants to know​ the truth behind the slavery question of pre-civil war America This book brought so many points to the forefront that I had never seen in print before. It is an excellent resource. I felt I had to give it 5 stars, as it was wonderfully written.

    Where to Find Our Man in Charleston:

    This​ book is available in Hardback, Paperback, Audiobook, Kindle, and Nook.

    | Barnes & Noble | Nook | Amazon | Kindle | Audible |

    View all my reviews

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    9 thoughts on “Book Review: Our Man in Charleston: Britain’s Secret Agent in the Civil War South, by Christopher Dickey

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