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By Force of Arms Paperback – September 22, 2012


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 444 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (September 22, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 147933717X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1479337170
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #161,757 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

The story line had a few too many threads, little development of the characters.
Old infantryman
I too have felt the battle at Gettysburg would probably have ended differently if Jackson had not been killed by his own men.
Jagman
I've read some bad books and this is not the worst by far, but it sure ain't good!
little e

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Jagman on November 1, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoy alternate history books and especially about the Civil War. But this book is ludicrous. Every piece of luck, turn of fate, last minute re-inforcements, equipment advantage, leadership abilities, skill of foot soldier, artillerymen, calvary and geralship belongs to the south. The northern leadership is always bumbling, stupid, drunk or incompetent. The book constantly raves about the advantage of the north in equipment, men, material, weapons and transportation abilities. But while talked about those advantages never appear in any of the battles. The south has gatling guns by the score, submarines,iron clads, cannons galore and their artillerymen are the best 'sharpshooters' the world has ever seen. The north can have a general up in an air ballon viewing all the battle field, yet he makes all the wrong moves. The south has generals who can only see whats around them, yet they make tactical decisions as if they had a satellite in space giving them real time views. John Wilkes Booth, the most famous actor of his era, can waltz into the White House, kidnap the President and no one recognizes him. In the battles the south is always in a defensive mode and the north marches right at them as they did at Fredericksburg. Every single battle is like that. The only 'advantage' the books shows for the north is the amount of men that get slauthered in these suicide attacks.

I too have felt the battle at Gettysburg would probably have ended differently if Jackson had not been killed by his own men. But this book takes it way to far. The north did have more men, transportation, material and strong leadership at the top than the south did. And those advantages did make a difference in the out come of the war. A more balanced telling would have made this a good book. As written, it is a disappointment.

And I gave it two stars. One because I had to at least give it one star. The second star is actually for me because I read the entire book.....
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful By William Henley on November 30, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Possibly I should not be reviewing/rating this book since I did not actually read the whole book. I read the first few chapters and then skipped to the end to get an idea how the story came out. The basic premise established in the early chapters was so implausible that I didn't feel like plowing through the rest of the book.
The premise is: The South has won the Civil War, due to the battle of Gettysburg turning out differently, and the Confederacy has established its de facto independence, though the Union does not officially recognize it. That's not the implausible part. The part I can't swallow is: The story picks up in 1869, after former Union general William T. Sherman has been elected President of the Union on a platform of revenge against the Confederacy. Now one of the best known facts about the real-life Gen. Sherman is that he was the most non-political of generals. He despised politics and politicians (even Lincoln, at first, though he later came to respect him). After the Civil War, when offered the chance to run for political office, Sherman made the famous "Sherman Statement" of refusal; "If nominated I will not accept, if elected, I will not serve."
Okay, but that was following a Union victory in the Civil War. Is it possible that following a Union defeat Sherman would have felt differently about politics, that he would have tried for the Presidency feeling it was up to him to redeem the Union cause? Maybe. But I don't think he would have won. Not given his ineptitude at politics and at handling the press (he hated reporters and editors even worse than he hated politicians) and not considering that, if the Civl War had ended at Gettysburg, Sherman would not have been all that prominent among Union generals.
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42 of 50 people found the following review helpful By SHIPSHAPE on November 2, 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love reading alternative history, as implausible as some of it may be. This book, needless to say, caught my eye and seemed like a good read; well I can't be right all the time. As stated in other reviews, the South has amazing luck, good fortune, the grace of the gods and a knack for always doing the correct thing and of course, they are all gentlemen.
I have to say that the book got rather boring and predictable; the South always got the better of the North and the commanders always "emptied their revolvers and drew their sabers" time and time again.
I got two-thirds of the way through and stopped, I no longer found it enjoyable to read. The number of books that I have not read to the end can be counted on one hand; this book has joined that small group.
I will only briefly mentioned how distracting it was to come across grammatical and errors of punctuation time and again; and of course there was the instance when President Grant was given papers to sign (Sherman is the President).
I have never written a review but felt I had to so, so that perspective buyers of this book are warned. This book had such potential, but alas, it was not meant to be.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By little e on March 15, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Bang! Your head exploded! If only Jessie James and those misunderstood souls would have fought that well in the first war I'm sure they would have had better luck in the end?
I thought this would have been better had it been an alternate universe rather then a alternate history book, seeing as some of the great generals from the army of the republic had somehow become retarded? If your writing an alternate history on anything I don't believe it lowers or increases the intelligence of the principles you're writing about?

I was looking for the number of troops that the confederacy had defending Richmond and I never got the count ? Attacking Richmond and a bit earlier were almost 180,000 union troops. Guess it wouldn't have mattered if it were more cause I already knew they would fail.

I particularly liked Thomas Jackson's reasoning on why the Union (and all other nations) who looked down on the south because of the simple slavery over site were hypocrites. Reason being the Union had men working for practically nothing under horrible conditions in factory's up north while their employers got wealthy, or perhaps he ment indentured servant? Yeah, that's just like being born into bondage ...yikes!!

I've read some bad books and this is not the worst by far, but it sure ain't good!
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