Smith conjures an elaborate American Civil War era and delves into the mystery of the lost Confederate Treasury toward the ending of the war in this excellent latest. Struggling to become a seaman, Yancey Arvindale leaps at the chance to join the troops assigned to guard the train that is carrying the Confederate gold away from Richmond, Virginia. Soon, an opportunity arises, and with financial freedom on mind, he decides to siphon some of the treasure for himself. But the fate has other plans for the young man. Meanwhile, Ellie, a runaway salve, is trying to stay alive after killing her master. As their paths collide, they face hard realities about themselves and the world they live in. Smith encompasses historical fact with great ease while exploring his protagonists’ inner trauma and struggles. Smith’s prose is precise, and his skilled worldbuilding allows him to delve deep into the intricate workings of colonialism and social issues of the era, including racism, slavery, and white supremacy as well as humanity, relationships, empathy, resilience, and trust. Multifaceted, earnest, and arresting, Smith’s excellent tale is sure to keep readers turning the pages fast. This is an ideal pick for history buffs longing for the American Civil War setting.