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The Killer Angels: The Classic Novel of the Civil War (Civil War Trilogy) Paperback – July 1, 1996
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“Remarkable . . . a book that changed my life . . . I had never visited Gettysburg, knew almost nothing about that battle before I read the book, but here it all came alive.”—Ken Burns
“Utterly absorbing . . . Shaara fabulously, convincingly brings characters such as Robert E. Lee to life and makes the conflict all too real.”—Forbes
“Shaara carries [the reader] swiftly and dramatically to a climax as exciting as if it were being heard for the first time.”—The Seattle Times
From the Publisher
Lisa Congelosi, Ballantine Sales Rep.
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The 5 copies I bought this time were gifts to friends so that in itself can say a lot of how I feel about the book!
It is a very good representation of the Battle of Gettysburg told from the view of handful "main" participating characters. It is fairly accurate historically based on the information that was available in mid-70 (many more things have come to the light since then, but on a larger scheme of things nothing fully distracts from the flow of events and the narration of the story)
It is a must for any CW scholar (beginner or not) and I totally recommend it!
The Killer Angels, By Michael Shaara
Kindle Edition (370 Pages)
The Killer Angels is a historical novel by Michael Shaara that received the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction in 1975. The plot is centered around the American Civil War and the events that unfolded during the four days period (June 30-July 3 1863) in which he Battle of Gettysburg was fought in Southeast Pennsylvania by the Union's Army of the Potomac and the Confederate's Army of Northern Virginia. The various protagonists in the novel are drawn from actual historical participants of the battle. The narrative is character-driven and told from the perspective of various protagonists. Shara completed extensive and meticulous research in order to ensure the historical accuracy of the events and characterizations described the narrative. The results is one of the most compelling and realistic novels of war I have ever read. And judging by the awards and accolades this novel received from historians, soldiers, and the general public, many others share my opinion. The novel was adapted to the highly acclaimed 1993 Hollywood film titled Gettysburg, as well as credited as inspirational by Ken Burns in the production of his award winning documentary about the American Civil War.
Almost every American has a basic knowledge of our Civil War, usually provided by public school text book, most often reduced to several paragraphs and several fuzzy black and white photographic images. The enormity of the impact of that war on the development of the American identity, race relations, and the role of the federal government in our daily life, all continue to challenge America in the 21st Century. Reading this book will help bring the issues that prompted 19th Century Americans to kill each other in record numbers for five bloody years, remind us what was at steak, and help us to understand why the Civil War was and continues to be such an important event in American history. The book is great read, a real page turner, and a true Five Star read.
Top international reviews
way it focuses on the personalities of main protagonists, rather than a blow by blow account of the battle. I found Lee, Longstreet and Chamberlain very interesting......and indeed humbling.....such warmth, in spite of sending thousands of men to their deaths.
This was the first major war following the Industrial Revolution where death become mechanised. It seems the armies learned very few lessons from Gettysburg: the charge into open ground after a cessation of an artillery barrage was repeated many times in World War I, not least at the Somme.
One thing puzzled me though. Why is there no mention of slavery? We English have always been brought up with the truism that the Civil War was all about its abolition. Still, a damned good read and recommended.
His characterization of the main actors, Lee, Longstreet, Pickett, Chamberlaine, Buford and others is masterful, and has a ring of authenticity.
The book is extremely well researched and based upon many contemporary accounts.
There is nothing new, but the "imagined" thought processes of the main protagonists are engaging and convincing. Occasionally these passages are a little too long, but I do recommend this book.