Sunday, April 18, 2010

"The secrets to all good writing is sound judgment." Horace

When the Civil War ended, many Confederate soldiers returned to their homes to find those homes had been burned to the ground. Often, their families were either murdered or had disappeared.

After Appomattox, Col. Rodney Tilt and the men of the Eleventh Virginia decide to travel back to their homes together.
They pass deserters, bushwhackers and union cavalry looking for un-surrendered Confederates.

When the unit reaches Lynchburg, they are shocked to see a northern patrol storm into the city and begin shooting surrendered Confederates. One man escapes and tells them that Lincoln has been assassinated and the Northerners are patrolling the main roads looking for Confederates to take revenge upon.

Taking back roads, slows the unit down and some men break off and travel the remainder by themselves.

One day, they are joined by Meg Forsythe who tells the men that a wild looking group of horsemen found that her family was sympathetic to the union. They killed her two brothers and made off with her mother and sister.

Misfortune followed the group and they are ambushed by a group of Northern Cavalry. When the Confederates do not surrender, there is gunfire. Two of the Confederates are killed and four other are hung for disobeying the terms of their surrender, not to bear arms against Union forces.

The few remaining soldiers finally get to Tilt's home and find it, in the midst of being attacked by a group of outlaws. They manage to chase the bandits and begin rebuilding their homes and their lives.

In this plot driven novel, the reader is given one small segment of the story after the next and a sense of suspense or drama is never achieved. The characters were one dimensional and one character changed completely during the story and the change didn't make sense. In addition, although the book does give a description of what life may have been like after the Civil War, there was so much sorrow that it was depressing.

No comments:

Currently Reading

Currently Reading
Broken Promise