As it was written in the forties when there were still men alive who fought in the War, it is very complicated. The country still had first hand knowledge and no artistic license is taken. The story is it is a story, more of an account, is astounding, as you read and somehow the numbers of casualties never leaves you mind. Of course we will never know another war like this which is fine by me. Lee had the men and Lincoln had the guns and trains. That is just about it. In this first volume of what turned out to be three the beginning is painfully slow as it must have been for Lincoln. However, it appears that this time was used by Lee and his men for good.