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The War That Forged a Nation
Pulitzer Prize-winning historian James M. McPherson looks anew at the reasons America's civil war has remained a subject of intense interest for the past century and a half. Learn more
While something of a "Civil War buff", I'm not onegiven to re-enactments and such. But I do enjoy books about the CivilWar that are historically accurate and most of all, do not bore me! Mr. Hagerty's tome fulfills both requirements. It's the story of the 114th Pennsylvania regiment, whose members were culled mostly from the Philadelphia area. They were a true cross-section of mid-19th century society, representing not only the trades and professions, but every degree of human courage (and cowardice) one can imagine. Much has changed since the 1860's, but the traits, trials, and frailties of Homosapiens remains a constant. This concept is key to the entertainment value of "Collis' Zouaves". Hagerty brings main characters to life, with an emphasis on historical accuracy. Letters, stories, and in many cases photographs, give the reader a "first-hand" feel to the narrative. For Civil War buffs, this book is a "must-have". For the rest of us, with or without a direct interest in the Civil War, Mr. Hagerty has accomplished what seems to be so rare: a history book that's meticulously researched, yet fun to read. In my book, it's a "must-have" for every American. I know I'll read it again.
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