Peter Burchard is the author of twenty-four books — both fiction and nonfiction — for young readers and adults. The last of these was a short biography of black teacher, essayist, and diarist Charlotte Forten. He is the author of One Gallant Rush: Robert Gould Shaw and His Brave Black Regiment, a major historical source for the motion picture Glory, which won three Academy Awards.
Two of his books have been listed by the American Library Association as Notable Books. "The New York Times" has praised him highly, saying that "he uses historical fact with skill" and describing him as having "a splendid facility for characterization."