Double Death: The True Story of Pryce Lewis, the Civil War's Most Daring Spy
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Double Death: The True Story of Pryce Lewis, the Civil War's Most Daring Spy

3.48 of 5 stars 3.48  ·  rating details  ·  33 ratings  ·  15 reviews
After an elderly man jumped from New York's Pulitzer Building in 1911, his death made the front page of the New York Times: "World Dome Suicide a Famous War Spy." By then Pryce Lewis had slipped entirely offstage; but, as Gavin Mortimer reveals, the headline did him justice, speaking to the dramatic, vitally important, and until now untold role he had played in the Civil W...more
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published August 17th 2010 by Walker & Company (first published August 2nd 2010)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 191)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
I won this ARC off of first reads.

This book is a great account of a forgotten Union spy. Perfect literature for history, spy and Civil War fans.

In order for me to appreciate non-fiction, I have to go into that mode and usually I can. I have to step out of wanting to be entertained (by good fiction) and step into wanting to learn something true.

***Spoiler alert***

Shortly after immigrating to United States in 1856, Pryce Lewis joined a detective agency, run by Allen Pinkerton. This agency soon b...more
I recieved this as a goodreads first read giveaway. It's a true story based on civil war spy Pryce Lewis. He did a great service to our country and was all but forgotten.
I had a hard time getting into this novel at the beginning. Although the book is well written. History is not my genre of choice. I believe that says something about the author's ability as a writer. By the end of the book, I was very fond of Pryce Lewis and saddened by his mistreatment by both the U.S. and his home country, E...more
Superb look into people's antics and thinking during the Civil War. Some were honorable, others were driven by greed, power, revenge, fear, or plain stupidity. Hhhuuummm... Sounds a little like today in America.

I could imagine the battle scenes, the motivations (or lack thereof) of people caught up in war, and the fear that Pryce Lewis endured as a spy for the North.

Excellent word pictues throughout added to my knowledge of the Civil War in a "behind the scenes" way as seen throught the eyes of...more
I won this book through goodreads first reads program.

I usually prefer fiction to non-fiction, but this book was so well written that I had trouble putting it down.

It's the true story of a spy during the Civil War. It's written in a non-stuffy style, unlike so many other books on history. You learn quite a lot about the individuals as well as receiving good coherent/cohesive background information on the Civil War.

If you are in to Civil War history, it's a must read and even if you're not, yo...more
A must for anyone who is interested in Civil War or spy history. The reader will not only find thoroughly researched and detailed information on the life and activities of Pryce Lewis but also of all people and places involved. An orderly extensive list of sources makes it easy for anyone to see where Mortimer obtained his information but will also aid in any personal searches.
Interesting story (though bookended by deep sadness about how his life ended) of Pryce Davis, a Union spy during the early years of the American Civil War.

I am curious at how the author arrived at his conclusions regarding the veracity of Davis' memoirs as opposed to the stories about Confederate spies like Belle Boyd & Rose Greenhow (sp?).
Katie H
I won this book through the first reads program.

I thought this was a very interesting account of the spy agencies during the Civil War. I knew little about the subject before reading the book. I found the content to be well-researched and informative. The life of Pryce Lewis is somewhat sad, but I enjoyed reading the story.
I read this one in a zip.
Couldn't put this incredible story down.
Welsh-born Pryce Lewis makes his way to U.S. America, becomes one of Pinkerton's detectives, and thereafter a Civial war spy for the Union.
Tragic and true, a riveting odyssey (with a tie to Jersey City to boot!)
April Fleming
Totally fascinating and fun to read. Story of a Civil War-era spy who worked for Allan Pinkerton and the Union. Well-researched, cleverly-written and suspenseful. Read like a good spy novel.
Very interesting look at Pinkerton's spy network in Richmond. Pyrce Lewis' story was intriguing, but tragic. Mortimer does a good job telling the entire story.
Aug 09, 2010 MBP marked it as unfinished
Shelves: first-reads
This was actually pretty good - I just put it down because I had other things to read with deadlines, and I never got back to it. Hope to finish it sometime.
Very interesting. Sad to see how the government repaid all his loyal and hard work. Too bad his family didn't reach out a little sooner.
The story of Pryce Lewis was interesting, but not always engaging. I certainly want to know more about Civil War spies though!
Jamey Rivera
While the story is intriguing, this book was written so...poorly...I couldn't stay awake. Boring as all get out.
Interesting book. I'd never heard of the guy, but he played a big part in some much needed Union victories.
Kirsten marked it as to-read
Jul 19, 2014
Nando Jansen
Nando Jansen marked it as to-read
Jul 11, 2014
Lauren Korsch
Lauren Korsch marked it as to-read
Jun 29, 2014
Christopher Turner
Christopher Turner marked it as to-read
May 10, 2014
Michelle marked it as to-read
Feb 22, 2014
KC marked it as to-read
Feb 05, 2014
Bethany marked it as to-read
Oct 02, 2013
Tami Nelson
Tami Nelson marked it as to-read
Sep 07, 2013
Elli marked it as to-read
Jul 31, 2013
Catherine marked it as to-read
Mar 31, 2013
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
For a detailed biography, to learn more about all the books I have written and to discover my forthcoming projects, please visit my website at the above link.
More about Gavin Mortimer...
The Great Swim The Longest Night: The Bombing of London on May 10, 1941 Chasing Icarus: The Seventeen Days in 1910 That Forever Changed American Aviation Stirling's Men: The Inside History of the SAS in World War II Merrill's Marauders: The Untold Story of Unit Galahad and the Toughest Special Forces Mission of World War II

Share This Book