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My Dearest Cecelia: A Novel of the Southern Belle Who Stole General Sherman's Heart
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My Dearest Cecelia: A Novel of the Southern Belle Who Stole General Sherman's Heart

3.86  ·  Rating details ·  141 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
As she enters the Commencement Ball at West Point Military Academy on a spring evening in 1837, in her pink gown with white silk roses and ropes of pearls, Cecelia Stovall looks---and feels---like the perfect, innocent Southern belle. Little does she know that at that dance she will meet the man who will change her life---and the lives of all her fellow Southerners---forev ...more
Hardcover, 305 pages
Published March 27th 2003 by St. Martin's Press
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Connie N.
This book was much more than I had expected when I first started. It began slowly, kind of with the epilogue first, then it gradually grew into a strong love story. William Sherman and Cecelia Stovall are both real people in history, although I suppose this connection between them is fictional. They met and immediately fell in love as teenagers when he was at West Point with her brother. Being a Northerner, even in the 1830's, was taboo, so her brother did all he could to come between them, inte ...more
Kierstin Veldkamp
Jun 14, 2017 rated it liked it
I was pleasantly surprised by this book. I work at (now a museum) place that Sherman marched through in Georgia and have always heard the rumors about why he saved some places over others is because he had a mistress there. I stumbled upon this book and decided to give it a shot. It provided much needed southern inspiration for a project I'm working on. The characters were nice and the southern sayings were great. I could hear the southern drawl in my head as I read. I was surprised that the Civ ...more
Betsy D.
Feb 09, 2018 rated it it was ok
This book had a great premise, as it was based on actual events. I never knew that General Sherman fell in love with a girl when he was a student at West Point, and then years later saved her house on his march to the sea! But... it was too much of a harlequin romance for me, with improbable dialogue, fluttering hearts, and graphic scenes. I found myself rolling my eyes at the things that the characters said, and the circumstances of the extramarital affair (I'm not even sure that there is histo ...more
Nov 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sometimes we want to tell everything about the book we have read, we want to share all the beauty and emotions of it. I don't want to do that. I want the readers to experience everything I just did for themselves. I want them to fall in love with My Dearest Cecelia, just as I did. I will tell you I found myself swept up into the story, I enjoyed the characters and I welcomed the tears.

I received a signed copy from the author, Diane Haeger. I thank you Diane, please keep writing your stories, you
Mar 09, 2017 rated it liked it
I wish I could give this book a 3.5 star. I really looked forward to reading this book, because I know very little about William T. Sherman and nothing at all about Cecelia. The book started out strong, but as it progressed, I felt the author didn't fully explore the characters and it felt rushed toward the end of the story.
Dec 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Really enjoyed the history in this book. Very well written and interesting
Tashinka Roz
Oct 07, 2017 rated it liked it
it was a good book. I like books that take place during the Civil War time period. I had never heard of the romance between Cecelia Stoically and William Sherman. It was a good read.
Jan 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Civil War buffs, historical romance
Recommended to Amber by: Self
So, I meant to write this a while (bold and underline this your mind) ago but time and life was all crazy and work and stuff. I was lucky enough to receive an autographed copy of My Dearest Cecelia and I was beyond overjoyed. Sure ,I love all of Diane's books, but I was wary about reading this one as I am not much into Civil War history and I had just read Lincoln: Team of Rivals. Great book and full of history goodness. I sat myself down and began to read My Dearest Cecelia. It doesn't di ...more
Jun 02, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book!
"Legend has it that Sherman's love for Cecelia was the reason he spared her hometown Augusta during his infamous march to the sea, when he burned Atlanta to the ground. Diane Haeger has re-created this lost romance in a sweeping and lyrical novel that will be treasured equally by the history enthusiast and the incurable romantic. As she enters the Commencement Ball at West Point on a spring evening in 1837, Cecelia Stovall looks and feels like the perfect, innocent Southern belle
Based upon true events, this story is one that many people have experienced. Finding love while young but being forced, through events, family or society, to stay apart except for infrequent (and stolen) moments of searing and blissful passion. A poignant love story about two soul mates whose hearts are forever connected while their bodies are physically kept apart. Very enjoyable read!
Mar 24, 2011 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book because it combines so much of what I like into a book: historical fiction, a good love story and the Civil War. Wow. Great read. Couple rated-R moments/questionable morality, but intriguing story nonetheless.
Mar 02, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
great book. haeger takes us inside the mind of the infamous Sherman and his secret love. This is a book about choices and their consequences, about forgiveness and looking past the pain to see the pain of another.
Jul 26, 2011 rated it it was amazing
This was one of the best books I've read in awhile. Similar to "Gone with the Wind" in some ways, but very different too. A story of love, slavery, Underground railroad, and bravery, as well as the war between North and South. I loved the heroine, Cecelia the most.
Cathy Ryan
Nov 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This was wonderful. I'm loving these historical fiction books. Bring me more!!
Dec 13, 2008 rated it did not like it
Very predictable & chessy, but it's mindless entertainment and a great beach read.
Feb 26, 2011 rated it did not like it
A really lame romance that we read by mistake.
Aug 18, 2012 rated it liked it
i really liked this book it was a very sweet story although a bit overdramatic and far-fetched at times
Feb 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This was one of the best war/romance novels I have ever read! I couldn't put it down!
Jan 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Wonderful Love story!!!!
Ethel Doucette
This was a book I couldn't put down, and I didn't want it to end. I didn't know about the great love of Sherman's life and the story behind it.
Dec 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
Well written, but the ending was hurried.
Well Read Southerner Blog
Jul 10, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Wow! If any of this is true it is quite a story. Romantic yet heartbreaking.
Gin Tadvick
Jul 28, 2011 rated it really liked it
Although I liked this book in general, I felt it dragged in some places and rushed through in others.
Jun 11, 2013 rated it it was amazing
First time reading about Sherman and have be human instead of killing machine.
Amy S
rated it it was amazing
Apr 29, 2015
Maurice Byrd
rated it it was amazing
Aug 23, 2016
Kate Klein
rated it it was amazing
Dec 20, 2013
Barbara Prestridge
rated it liked it
Jun 06, 2015
rated it liked it
Oct 26, 2016
Izaiah Cooley
rated it did not like it
Dec 15, 2016
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Diane Haeger is the bestselling author of fifteen published novels, including Courtesan, The Ruby Ring and My Dearest Cecilia. Her work, to date, has been translated into 18 different languages and has been featured in the LA Times and Harper's Bazaar Magazine. She loves telling real stories from history. She lives in California with her husband and family.
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