Claudia's Reviews > Andersonville

Andersonville by MacKinlay Kantor
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Jan 04, 12

Read from December 26, 2011 to January 04, 2012

Andersonville...all hope abandon, ye who enter here. All hope was abandoned by the 45,000 Union soldiers imprisoned here. More than 12,000 would die, the ones left living, if you could call it that, limped or crawled home after war's end with what was left of their tattered spirits and broken bodies.

MacKinley Kantor spent 25 years researching and two years writing this magnum opus, and justifiably being awarded the Pulitzer Prize.

The prison itself was fact, along with the poor unfortunates imprisoned on it scant 20 acres. The prison administration was fact. Kantor merely populated the town surrounding it with fictional characters.

Kantor populates his novel with a cast of hundreds showing the epic scale of this deplorable prison. Both the Blue and the Grey are shown at their worst and at their best.

Each chapter highlights and tells the story of one of the prisoners and one of his captors juxtaposed with the small town and its inhabitants near the prison.

Considered the ultimate novel of the Civil War;
And justifiably so. On each of the 760 pages you will be swept up in the great conflict and feel it viscerally as it happens to the characters you have come to know.

Henry Wirz, the commander of the stockade was the only person ever executed for war crimes perpetrated by an American on American soil.

An epic tale of a by gone era whose scars and effects are seen and felt to this day.
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