The Killer Angels

The Killer Angels - Michael Shaara This summer a friend and I were trying to decide on a destination for a short trip. We knew it had to be reasonably close, because we only had what amounted to an extended weekend but it also had to be far enough to make it seem like a mini vacation. We were suffering from a terrible case of the "been there, done thats" when my friend mentioned a long time desire to visit Gettysburg. A desire brought on by playing a video game of all things. Although I had no overwhelming desire to visit Gettysburg, it turned out to be a fascinating destination, which led me to pick up some books to find out more about what I had learned while visiting. I generally shy away from three genres of books ... westerns, sci-fi and war ... this was definitely an exception to the rule.

Where GODS AND GENERALS (Jeff Shaara) focuses on the years leading up to the Civil War, Michael Shaara’s book covers primarily the three days of fighting at Gettysburg. The events immediately before and during the battle are “seen through the eyes of Confederate Generals Lee, Longstreet, and Armistead and Federal General Buford, Colonel Joshua L. Chamberlain, and a host of others”. (Quote from the book cover)

While the book seems to be well researched (Despite my visit to Gettysburg I am still in no position to judge this fact with any accuracy) it is a work of historical fiction. I was not looking for a history book; I was looking for a book to give me the flavor of those years and possibly some understanding of this period in U.S. history. My needs were met.