I recently finished reading the Civil War novel; The Yankees had something to do with it and promised the author I would post a review. Firstly, two cI recently finished reading the Civil War novel; The Yankees had something to do with it and promised the author I would post a review. Firstly, two confessions; I was provided a free copy of this book by the author and secondly, I normally don’t read novels, I think this is the fourth novel I have read in about 15 years.
I have read numerous books on the battle of Gettysburg since the 1993 movie based on the novel The Killer Angels was released. The first was “High Tide at Gettysburg” by Glenn Tucker, the most recent title was “Gettysburg: The last Invasion” by Allen Guelzo, so I was unsure what I would get out of a fictional account of this battle.
What I did get out of this book was an enjoyable and highly readable account of the Union command at Gettysburg. Basically the author attempts to provide the reader with a fictionalised account of what the Union commanders where thinking during the battle of Gettysburg which I found worked quite well. If you have read at least one campaign study on this battle then this novel provides you with the inside story of the command decisions and an insight into the human element of this battle.
I found the book moved along at a great pace, it’s not full of accounts of hand-to-hand combat between the Rebel and Union forces but what the various commanders were thinking and saying. I really was drawn into the story, to the point I wanted more information on General Abner Doubleday and his actions of the first day of the battle.
I enjoyed following the orders and the interaction between the various Union commanders, both the good and bad. You get to read about General Dan Sickles and his actions during the battle and the role of General Dan Butterfield. The book made me want to go find my unread book of Hancock the Superb by Glenn Tucker and my copy of Searching for George Gordon Meade: The Forgotten Victor of Gettysburg by Tom Huntington, amongst others.
So overall I really enjoyed this fictional account of the battle, it is a book that fills in the gaps that you may find in reading a non-fiction campaign study of the battle. I would suggest that this is a book that could be read before or after you tackle an historical account, it provides some depth to the command decisions and may assist in your understanding of the actions taken by the Union commanders on the field of battle. Further, there are a number of basic maps to assist readers in following the action. ...more
This has been the first novel that I have read for many years and what a delight it was to read. Although this book was first published in 1949 it stiThis has been the first novel that I have read for many years and what a delight it was to read. Although this book was first published in 1949 it still offers anyone interested in the Napoleonic Wars an engrossing story of men at war.
The author provides the reader with a great story of seven French Voltiguers (elite skirmishers and/or marksmen) fighting during the campaigns of the Empire under Napoleon from the battle of Aspern to the final showdown at Waterloo.
We trudge through cannonades and cavalry charges, hot dusty treks into Spain and Portugal and into the Winter of Russia before the final campaigns and battles of 1813, 1814 and 1815. Although the battle scenes are not in-depth accounts the author provides enough for the reader to get a feel for the heat of battle
I found myself rushing through the book to find out what happened to my brave Voltiguers and actually felt a touch of sadness at the end of the story for the fate of these brave men.