Book Beat: “Annie and the Prince of Wales,” by Duane Robert Pierson

Duane Robert Pierson In His  Chair at Longfellow Books

By Carol McCracken  (Post # 1,303)

“It was the most important week in Portland’s history,” said Duane Robert Pierson, author of Annie and the  Prince of Wales, a historical novel.   That week occurred in October of 1860, shortly before  the election of President Abraham Lincoln.  Because of the importance of the upcoming Presidential election, the brief visit of the Prince of Wales to Portland had been lost to history –  that is until Pierson found it  and brought it back to life in his paperback book published last year.

The youthful son of Qeen Victoria would board a vessel in Portland Harbor for his return voyage to England.  This voyage followed a whirl-wind visit to Canada by “Bertie” as a stand-in for the Queen who had other travel plans simultaneously.

The build-up to the Prince’s arrival is full of subplots that are based on the lives of real people  skillfully interwoven with Portland history and that of the Hill in particuilar. The entire book is enertaining and historical which keeps the reader coming back to learn the fate of the individuals.

Chris Cowe, co-owner of Longfellow Books, Monument Way, began selling the paperback at the end of last year.  He told MHN.com B.F. (Before the Flood) that it was one of the top 100 selling books at Longfellow’s. “That’s amazing since we onlly sold it for the last two months of 2012,” he said.

This is not the first book that Pierson has had published.  He’s written college text books and books of poetry.  A Portland resident, he’s a man of many interests; from history to biology, backed by  graduate degrees.  But his overriding interest is writing.  Readers can hope that Pierson, 75,  has another historical novel in mind.  He  frequents a chair at Longfellow Books where you can visit with him.

The paperback costs $15.99 and is 233 pages long.