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Wilderness Run: A Novel Paperback – Bargain Price, November 1, 2003

3.9 out of 5 stars 10 customer reviews

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Paperback, Bargain Price, November 1, 2003
$4.49

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

The horrors of the Civil War are the crucible of romance for two Vermont cousins in Hummel's debut, which is gracefully and evocatively written but hobbled somewhat by a plot that features several war-novel cliches. The book begins when 12-year-old Isabel Lindsey and her 17-year-old cousin Laurence encounter a runaway slave and try to save the man despite the objections of Isabel's father. The tragic outcome triggers a crisis of conscience for Laurence that leads him to enlist in the Army of the Potomac. His stint in uniform cures him of his rich-boy sense of privilege, exposing him to the nightmare of battle and forcing him to struggle to gain the acceptance of the men in his regiment. While Laurence is coming into his manhood as a soldier, the smart, independent Isabel finds herself challenged by her attraction to her French tutor, a Canadian named Louis Pacquette, who changes his neutral stance toward the war and enlists. Their relationship turns triangular when Laurence returns to Vermont after a minor injury in battle and finds that he has feelings for Isabel. Hummel creates solid characters while capturing the day-to-day reality of military life during the Civil War, and her well-paced, elegant prose turns especially poignant at the end when Laurence is gravely wounded and saved by Pacquette at Chancellorsville. Sending a young rich man to war is a time-worn plot device, but Hummel is a solid writer who inserts enough intriguing turns in her narrative to keep things interesting.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

In this debut novel, Hummel recounts the intrusion of the Civil War into the lives of cousins Isabel and Laurence Lindsey. At the age of 12, Bel has always been protected and cosseted by her wealthy Vermont family, while Laurence, five years older, attends school in Boston. On one of Laurence's infrequent visits home, the cousins find a runaway slave on the frozen lake. Their attempt to help him without involving their disapproving fathers brings home the harsh political realities of 1859. Two years later, Laurence enlists in the Second Vermont as a foot soldier, and the cousins' stories continue in alternating sections. Laurence experiences the boredom and squalor of military life punctuated by bloody battles, while Bel continues her safe and privileged existence. Eventually, Belle goes to Washington, DC, with her aunt to do her part by working in a hospital. Hummel's language is lyrical and vivid, and her portrayal of the everyday life of the Lindsey family and of Laurence's regiment is detailed and realistic. However, except for Laurence, the characters lack depth. The story and historical setting are interesting, but the reader is left wanting more. Recommended for larger public libraries. Ann Fleury, Tampa-Hillsborough Cty.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • ISBN-10: 0312320477
  • ASIN: B000HWYK1Q
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.5 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,323,374 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
This is a good rainy weekend book, full of enough gory battles to keep you
riveted and enough warm domestic scenes to stop you from feeling guilty for
sipping your third hot chocolate. Beautiful writing, great historical
detail.
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Format: Hardcover
Actually I'm somewhere between 2 Stars and 3 Stars, I guess about 2 1/2. The book was just OK. I think the story was pretty good, but I didn't care for the style of writing. I sometimes had to go back and re-read a paragraph to find who was actually speaking and what was going on. When I read the description, I thought it would be a good Civil War story with families and romance. It was not what I thought it would be and some of the war scenes were a little bit too graphic for my taste. It didn't seem like something a woman would write. I was a little bit surprised at the ending. Not at all what I expected. I'm not sure if I would recommend this book or this author and not sure if I will read anything else written by her.
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Format: Hardcover
there are few civil war novels that stand above the crowded field. most hobble themselves with buddy-picture-like male cameraderie that fails to invoke the true spirit of an age that at least for the middle and upper middle class was more concerned with the etherial and transcendant than back slapping brotherhood. ms. hummel evokes the suffering, the dread, the gothic din and the warmth of the period better than any recent effort.
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Format: Paperback
I thought the book was a fine first novel. The language was well-crafted and vivid, the characters felt real and unpredictable, and the story kept me reading continuously. There were moments that felt a bit preachy or sentimental, for example, the various talks among the soldiers about fighting for the freedom of all men, and so forth, but those conversations struck me as things that Civil War soldiers might actually say, a level of sentimentality that was present at the time, and, while a bit out of place in our society today, perfectly reasonable for the era Hummel was writing about. I came away from the novel with its characters still on my mind, some of the lines and images still reverberating for me. In all, a very good reading experience.
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Format: Hardcover
This was the kind of book that left me thoughtful and satisfied like those books I read in my teens on Saturday mornings curled up and never going downstairs to start the day. I can't wait for Hummel to write more books. She mixes insight and poetry well. It is as if she talked first hand with those who recalled specific Civil War experiences and then wrote them into this novel.
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