The Killer Angels (The Civil War Trilogy, #2) The Killer Angels discussion


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Good Coverage of Gettysburg

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message 1: by JDS (new) - rated it 3 stars

JDS I thought that this book provided a good view of both sides of the battefield. It produced the leaders of both sides focus and vision on how they made decisions that would effect them later as well as if they would win the battle. Do you think that they production of correct research played a major role in how Shaara developed characters throughout the novel?


Roxanne OMG the BEST book ...I have read it innumerable times, given it to at least 50 people...All hail the 20th Main and Chamberlain


message 3: by Feliks (last edited Apr 07, 2013 04:24PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Feliks Nope. Its great, but try Andersonville by MacKinlay Kantor Andersonville by MacKinlay Kantor.


I'm only 164 pages in, and it already beats Michael Shaara by a country mile. You wanna feel like you're traveling back in time and smelling the war, tasting the war, feeling 1864 clothes on your body, hearing the soldiers' voices? Kantor all the way.

Its absurd this book and this author are now so obscure. Best civil war reading experience ever. Still over a 1,000 pages to go! Friggin sublime. Raw, brutal, tragic, frightening.


David Hensley One of the best I think.

dh


message 5: by C (new) - rated it 5 stars

C Balson Michael Shaara didn't win the Pulitzer for nothin' - (sorry) The book is well crafted and provides those with out significant civil war experience an opportunity to make an initial foray into a subject that has so much written about it. Historically almost accurate, its interpretative and puts flesh around many of the leading characters. If you want to know Gettysburg then reading Conddington book - I agree that Andersonville is very compelling. Very good read.


Greg Miller The most spectacular point of the book is the explanation Chamberlain gives of why the war is necessary to fight. That trumps any notion in Andersonville.


message 7: by Feliks (last edited May 02, 2013 06:58PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Feliks H'mmm. I gotta demur on that. Can't go along with it. 'Trump' the 768 pages of Mackinlay Kantor?

'Andersonville' covers probably fifty different opinions of the war; told from 150 different characters, all of whom undergo changes and shifts in their view as they interact with each other. Idea after idea is trotted out. Perspective after perspective. Looking backward in time, and forward. From Europe to Oregon.

In Civil War literature, its the viewpoint of the North we too often get. How often do we enjoy a chance to eavesdrop on the inner psychological monologues of Confederate Southerners? I can't think of any novel, which gives us characters as rich as the white trash living alongside the prison swamp. Its a stupendous feat. Plus the language.

Shaara's work was wonderfully handled and passionate--and rich--but nothing that was really unexpected. It had a structure familiar from other novels. The writing, too--straightforward. 'Andersonville' has not only, ingenious narrative tricks in order to move among so many characters; but its more like a dozen novels in one. Right up to the end of the book, he's taking us all the way out to an Ohio family. Right up to the end of the book, it seems like a fresh novel is ready to start.


message 8: by Greg (last edited May 07, 2013 12:42PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Greg Miller I guess I was too swayed by the fact that KA is so simply explained that when I walked the battlefield the book could have been used as a walking tour guide. It so thoroughly explained that battle that I was thankful [and grateful] someone had written it that way. The movie [thankfully] followed the book almost like a script. I'm not into the horror of Andersonville like some people and I am at the age where that kind of subject matter is not enjoyable for me (it might be for others). I would also say that more times than not I am for uplifting reading, not explorations in the evil men are capable of. I would not, for instance, give 5 seconds to devote to Silence of the Lambs, no matter how well-written or professionally fascinating it has been executed. And, I should not have even suggested comparing the two books, A and KA, because people who liked one will suppose theirs is "better." KA just worked for me for supplying a definition of why men fought the Civil War, no more, no less.


Feliks Very good points! I applaud your point-of-view on this.


message 10: by Greg (new) - rated it 5 stars

Greg Miller Feliks wrote: "Very good points! I applaud your point-of-view on this."

Thank you; your comment was appreciated.


message 11: by Gary (new) - rated it 5 stars

Gary I applaud the better angels. Enjoyed reading your back and forth.


message 12: by Feliks (last edited May 10, 2013 10:16PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Feliks I love it when someone states their case well-- that's what Greg did. He made a very keen observation.

After all, two superb books, both of them--its not a contest to name a "#1". They're way out ahead of so many other works on the same subject. A grand thing that they were each recognized for their fine merits.

Its easy to see that even a much shorter book (Killer Angels) can be honed to such a fine edge, that it fully well stands up to the longer, larger volume by Kantor.

I'm just a tad dismayed that the earlier work ('Andersonville') seems so neglected these days. To me, Kantor's creation reads like its got a dozen smaller books encompassed within it; each one able to standalone on its own.

When you think about the sheer difficulty of writing historic battles and making them come to life, what these writers both did deserves all the laurels we can heap on them.


Nicholas Feliks wrote: "I love it when someone states their case well-- that's what Greg did. He made a very keen observation.

After all, two superb books, both of them--its not a contest to name a "#1". They're way out..."


Have loved KA and re-read just recently. Was unaware of MacKinlay Kantor's 'Andersonville', but shall now try and correct that oversight. Thanks!


Nicholas Feliks wrote: "I love it when someone states their case well-- that's what Greg did. He made a very keen observation.

After all, two superb books, both of them--its not a contest to name a "#1". They're way out..."

OK, just downloaded 'Andersonville' onto my Kindle. Again thanks for the heads up.


message 15: by Feliks (last edited May 12, 2013 09:07PM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Feliks Ack. Ouch. Groan. I would consider it a personal favor if you read it in the medium it was originally intended for. Paper. Kantor took twenty-five years to write the thing. The result is a big, weighty, heavy book, large dimensions, robust print. Bespeaks of its timeperiod. Its an experience. Its not an mp3. Can you really respect any 'book' translated into something that weighs 2.5 oz? Where the pages aren't really pages but just electronic wisps as you wave your finger in the air? 'Andersonville' is one of those books that takes up a permanent place on one's shelf after reading. It generates an emotional bond. Just saying! Stay authentic! :\


Nicholas Sorry, can't go with you on that one. Love my books, but my physical disabilities make reading heavy books impossible. Love my Kindle, too. There's a place for both in the world, and prose is still prose, electronic or printed.


Feliks Not really, but okay. If you've got a disability, I won't argue the point. A matter of a few ounces..


Betsy I definitely appreciate being able to use a Kindle, but like hardcover books for maps and illustrations. Non-fiction books do not always adapt well to the Kindle.


message 19: by Nicholas (last edited Jun 16, 2015 07:01PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Nicholas Nicholas wrote: "Sorry, can't go with you on that one. Love my books, but my physical disabilities make reading heavy books impossible. Love my Kindle, too. There's a place for both in the world, and prose is still..."

I read in whatever format I choose and suits me not anybody else. I'm sure some traditionalists would prefer to be reading on wax tablets :)


Betsy I agree with you. Every one should read in whatever format they prefer. Reading is a pleasure, not one of the Ten Commandments.


Gregory My God is this a powerful and gut lingering book.I still see images of certain seens and invision Lee in horror and a depth of unconsolable greif as the shatered remnent comes past him. Man what a book.


David A classic novel.


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