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The Sentinels of Andersonville

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  719 Ratings  ·  183 Reviews
Near the end of the Civil War, inhumane conditions at Andersonville Prison caused the deaths of 13,000 Union soldiers in only one year. In this gripping and affecting novel, three young Confederates and an entire town come face-to-face with the prison’s atrocities and will learn the cost of compassion, when withheld and when given.

Sentry Dance Pickett has watched, helpless
Hardcover, 348 pages
Published February 1st 2014 by Tyndale House Publishers (first published January 17th 2014)
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I received a copy of this book via a Goodreads first reads giveaway in exchange for an honest review of the book. Based on the fact that Civil War history isn't completely my thing, I didn't start the book with a very high expectation, but found it to be a very well written, draw you in historical fiction. The problem I often have with this genre is that the "historical" parts of the books can often be little more than back setting, but in this one there is a great balance of storyline with a he ...more
SUMMARY: Near the end of the Civil War, inhumane conditions at Andersonville Prison caused the deaths of 13,000 Union soldiers in only one year. In this gripping and affecting novel, three young Confederates and an entire town come face-to-face with the prison’s atrocities and will learn the cost of compassion, when withheld and when given.

Sentry Dance Pickett has watched, helpless, for months as conditions in the camp worsen by the day. He knows any mercy will be seen as treason. Southern belle
Amber Schamel
Sep 27, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book has great characters, and it outlines the story of Andersonville very well.

There are some gruesome parts to the story that were very difficult to read. The many Point of Views I didn't like at first, but it really served to portray the many different viewpoints of the South, North, as well as those inside and outside the prison.

There are a few words in this book that I would consider minor expletives, such as a*s*e.

I loved the story, but I was a little disappointed in the ending. We le
Lori Twichell
Nov 12, 2013 rated it really liked it
Tracy Groot has crafted an incredible journey into history that is sure to change the way you perceive the Civil War. I grew up in Pennsylvania. Civil War history was all around me. I even dated a Civil War re-enactor for a while. So it was with no small amount of history and knowledge that I approached this read. And still I was shocked with everything I didn’t know about Andersonville and its history. I had known enough to know that it wasn’t exactly walk in the park, but I hadn’t realized how ...more
May 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Very well done novel about Andersonville and the citizens of nearby Americus.

The main female character, Violet, demonstrates what it is like to be fervent for a cause with blinders on. It's something easy to do. Watching her blinders be removed was one of the many bright spots. Violet didn't become any less a Southern supporter, but did become more human.

There was quite a bit of dry humor throughout which very much appealed to me. I also enjoyed the way characters spoke to each other in literary
Aug 11, 2016 rated it really liked it
Good historical fiction. Tracy Groot did a wonderful job. This was a part of history I did not know much about. The author was poignant in her story and did not sugar coat the living conditions of the prisoner's I was surprised that the surrounding areas that lived around prison seemed oblivious the harsh realities of how men lived and died in the prison
Jolina Petersheim
Jan 27, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Riveting, uplifting story about the triumph of good over evil. I am not a history buff, and I was greatly drawn in to every researched detail of SENTINELS. Looking forward to reading more from Tracy Groot!
Andrea Cox
by Andrea Renee Cox

If it weren't for the profanity and expletives in this book, The Sentinels of Andersonville would have been a truly dynamic keeper of a book for me. Why is it that the books that use the Lord's name in vain and use words inappropriate for anyone's ears are the ones honored by Christian awards? That is why I tend to be wary of award-winning books these days; they often have to cross the line in order to secure the win, which is such a shame. Sentinels had incredible potential t
Jocelyn Green
Loved the characters, their dialogue, and that the point of the entire book is not a prison camp, but the idea that we should be individual agents for good even if there is not an organized social activism group to join for a particular cause. Having done some research on Andersonville myself, I would say that Groot did an admirable job portraying it without being sensational. I know parts of the text were hard to read, but it's really not as graphic as it could have been when considering what a ...more
Phillip Cole
Jan 10, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I have heard about the hard times both soldiers and civilians faced during the Civil War. In school, the teachers covered how supplies were scarce and people often went with little food and clothing. How there was a hatred on both sides just based on not much more than the fact that they were enemies. But, even though I knew prisoners were taken, that fact was not mentioned very often, and how they were treated didn't come up much at all.

Tracy Groot gives a voice to how things were for the Union
Sam B
Wow! This book is such a powerful read.

When I picked up this book, I had never heard of Andersonville before. When I started reading and realized all the atrocities the prisoners of Andersonville endured, I was stunned.

Of course, this book is a work of fiction, but it is centered around real events. I could feel how the characters felt and really hurt for all the prisoners that actually died there. I can't imagine how the actual sentinels of Andersonville and residents of Americus felt when th
Jan 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Masterful storytelling, full of priceless witty dialogue between well-developed characters, makes this a must read for historical fiction fans! Despite the horrible background of inhumane conditions--think concentration camp--the beauty of friendship, love and personal sacrifice shine through.
I put off reading this book after finding out that a relative was among the thousands that died in Andersonville prison, but am so glad I eventually braved it. What a book! Just enough description to rela
Kate (The Shelf Life)
I have heard some amazing things about Tracy Groot's books. After reading The Sentinels of Andersonville, I found out that everything I have heard is true!

Tracy Groot can capture your full attention with her story telling. Instead of describing what is happening, she is able to bring you into the scene with your senses. She is able to show you, let you smell, and taste what is going on with her words. The Sentinels of Andersonville was a part of history and Tracy brought this time back to life.

Jan 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
This was not in my typical reading genre', and was also a new author to me, but I do enjoy reading about the Civil War, so I decided to review it, and am glad I did. It was even better than it sounded.

The book is fictional, but is centered around a real prison in the South for Northerners that had been captured in battle. The conditions described in the book were real, and there are also some real historical figures in the book, but the events are fictional, along with some of the people.

Aug 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Let me begin by saying this is one of my favorite reads all year. If you enjoy historical fiction set in the South during the Civil War, you will love this book. I adore the characters and felt a strong attachment to them after each were introduced. Dance Pickens is a Sentry stationed at Andersonville prison. He hates watching the Union soldiers imprisoned there dying of starvation and exposure yet he feels helpless to do anything about it. Emory Jones is a Confederate soldier who is appalled by ...more
You think of war atrocities as being something new. And then you read this book, where Union soldiers, well POWs, are marched to Andersonville Prison in Georgia in 1864. I liked that Tracy Groot told the story through the eyes of various people. The doctor and family who try to make a difference, one of the watch guards Dance, and then through an unlikely friendship of Lew and Emery. There are some secondary characters who I liked - Burr, Sargeant Keppel, Andy. And the story is tastefully done a ...more
Jack Groot
Aug 17, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Wow, the girl can write!

I know I am biased, she's my wife. But, honestly the only 2 fiction writers that keep me engaged, allow me to "see" the story, and can turn a phrase are Tracy Groot and Louis L'amour (I've read more LL, but that's only cause he wrote more books).

I told Tracy many, many years ago that, "someday I'll have 4 words for you" - I. Told. You. So. - and reviews from Booklist, PW, Christy Awards and more all affirm what I saw many, many years ago.

Way to go Tracy!!
Jul 04, 2014 rated it it was amazing
There were times while I was reading this that I thought, my God, I don't want to know this, but I knew I had to keep reading. another thought: the Germans treated the Jews better than the South treated the POWS at Andersonville. I know, the North did not treat their POWS well either, but at least they had shelter and food.
Excellent research and well written.
I will read more of this author.
Good 4th of July reading.
I somewhat liked to read books that involves human suffering that happens in history. Mostly I liked to read historical novels and biographies during World War II, and the flight of the Jews during the Nazi time. But this book got me hooked when the author started to described human suffering in prison during the Civil War in America. The way the author waved her story captured my imagination of how difficult life was during those times. The drama grips my heart. A compelling read!
Vickie Dee
Apr 14, 2014 rated it it was amazing
One of the best historical fictions I've read! Groot writes a delicately balanced account of the horrible conditions on Andersonville Prison. Her characters draw the reader into the story. It was definitley a page turner that had me rooting for the good in the local residents to overcome the evil.
Apr 04, 2014 rated it did not like it
Wasn't what I thought it would be. I felt the main characters were flat. I remember seeing a miniseries show years ago about Andersonville, and have always wanted to learn more about it. It doesn't seem to be much talk about....
May 18, 2014 rated it liked it
A very good story with interesting characters about a fascinating and ugly episode during the Civil War. Certainly not high-literature but entertaining and a little bit thought provoking, although a bit moralizing at times.
Amelia R
Jul 30, 2015 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars
Jun 26, 2014 marked it as to-read
26 JUN 2014 -- a TBR because for five years we lived close to Andersonville and we visited the site several times. Each time we visited, my heart ached and I cried many tears.
Nov 12, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: own, favorites
Smack in the middle of hell.. An amazing story
Sep 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A nonfiction expose of Andersonville back in junior high or high school is one of the books that sparked (or shocked) me into a life long interest in our country's history, especially those stories which often miss others' attention. Hopefully, most of us recognize that Andersonville was a Southern prison for Union captives in Georgia; it has taken a place in history as one of those events that must not be forgotten, lest it be ever be repeated. Over 13,000 soldiers died there during the last 14 ...more
Rev. Linda
Incredibly sad yet at the same time redeeming historical novel about the horrors of the Andersonville Prison during the Civil War...Tracy Groot is a master at providing details that actually allowed me to envision just how horrible the conditions were in that prison -not for the squeamish, but I do recommend if you, like me, did not know about this part of history. -- From the Publisher: Near the end of the Civil War, inhumane conditions at Andersonville Prison caused the deaths of 13,000 Union ...more
Oct 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017
Andersonville Prison was only in operation from February 1864 to May 1865, but during that short time its name became synonymous with horror, disease, and death. More than one-quarter of its 45,000 prisoners (13,000) died there.

Ms. Groot has written with obvious feeling about the miseries of the prison, but I am sure she has not even touched one-tenth of the reality. Yet she has not written a book that is unrelentingly grim: she has also written of friendship, of love, and of redemption. I will
Jul 16, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was a well written book with a well thought out plot and some nice twists and turns. It provides the reader with a look into the cruel and inhumane world of Andersonville Prison in Sumter County, Georgia during the latter years of the Civil War. The beauty of this novel is its ability, through the excellent development of characters on both sides and accurate historical information, to demonstrate that the War wasn't just simply the Confederates Vs. the Union. There were real life people in ...more
Although I don't consider myself a Southerner, I spent 21 years of my life in middle Georgia, and am very familiar with Andersonville Prison. The difference now though, is Ms. Groot took the facts I learned, and profoundly, deeply personalized them. Ms. Groot has a gift with words... this is the second book I've thoroughly enjoyed by her (the first being: The Maggie Bright; a novel of Dunkirk). Something I've appreciated from both these experiences, is how she caused me to contemplate my willing ...more
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Christian Histori...: Sentinels of Andersonville -- Interview 1 9 Sep 30, 2014 07:05AM  
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Tracy Groot is the critically acclaimed and Christy Award–winning author of several works of historical fiction. Her books have received starred Booklist and Publishers Weekly reviews and have been called "beautifully written" and "page-turning" by Publishers Weekly, and "gripping" with "exquisitely drawn" characters by Library Journal.

Tracy and her husband have three grown sons and a daughter-in