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Firefly: A Civil War Story Paperback – November 8, 2012
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About the Author
Whitney Hamilton grew up in New Orleans, Louisiana and Birmingham, Alabama. She has written numerous plays and screenplays. "The Thistle Dwellers" won first place for playwrighting at the Pacific Northwest Writer's Conference 1998 and was nominated for the Mentorship Program through Cherry Lane Alternative Theatre. The screenplay version of "The Thistle Dwellers" was a semi-finalist at the Austin Heart of Film Festival Screenplay Competition 2000. Her screenplay "In Search of the Monkey Girl" won honorable mention at the Slamdance Film Festival 1997. Her play "Union" was produced Off-Broadway in 2001 and inspired this, her first novel. She is the writer/director of the upcoming independent film "My Brother's War" set during the American Civil War. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top customer reviews
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The author takes a terrible time in our history, the war, and takes us on a journey with Grace/Henry as she experiences lost, death, fear and manages to survive it all. The other protagonist in the story is Virginia's journey and the impact of the war on her life and the battering her heart and soul takes. I don't want to reveal much but I will state that sometimes when all seems lost but despair and hardship it is great to find characters that persevere and find other strengths. The author made these characters very special to me. I did not care about the particulars of loving men or women but the importance of love and the survival of some inner core we have and the ability to rekindle that.
The book uses many methods to tell the story - the narrator, the letters, the inner thoughts and dreams of characters. The story is told using the grit of the reality of the moment and the hallucinations or connections to people from our past, present and future. There are songs, music, and lyrical words used to transform us from the here and now to another century where we connect to the emotions of lost, love and heartbreak. (Can you tell I truly enjoyed the book!)
The book does have some weaknesses and could use some editing as noted by other reviewers but none of the weaknesses in any way took away from the power of the story, the strength of the writing and music the words made in my heart and mind. I wanted the story to continue. That says it all.
As far as the Kindle version, there were several spelling errors that could have been corrected with more careful editing.
In conclusion, this was a fun, easy read when not looking for literary prose.
Can't say enough about how incredible this book is, definitely one of the best in the genre.
The story was captivating and it dragged the reader raw across a grater.
So much ground was carefully laid for the two main characters so we can follow their development. After such an lengthy ordeal there were no intertwining of the full characters leaving the story unsatisfying but still a wonderful complex plot.
It is estimated that there were 250 disguised Ladies in the civil war! They were held in high regard by their fellow soldiers until they were found out. They joined their husbands and family and re married again as most of their husbands were killed. I was stunned by this truth as I would have tried anything not to join a war, I would have disguised myself as a lady if I were male!
The story is in depth and at times overly theological which becomes somewhat distracting for such a lenghty novel but the tempo remains intact and linear. The conclusion is thoughtful and satisfying.