The Best On-Line Civil War Discussion
USENET NEWSGROUP SOC.HISTORY.WAR.US-CIVIL-WAR
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For anyone who has read this far I'm offering a used but free copy of the audiobook version of Jeff Shaara's Mexican War novel "Gone For Soldiers." Send me, Mike Furlan e-mail [mike "at" thecivilwargroup.com] with your physical address, and I'll send it to you.
Starting Moday February 23rd 2004, and continuing for the next two weeks, N. Canfield will visit the newsgroup to discuss his book "All Out of Heart:
Witness to a Self-Destructing Country New book tells story of Civil War through journalist's eyes LINDENHURST, Ill. - During the conflict in Iraq, many journalists were "embedded" with troops, or given special access to follow military units through battle. Journalists have worked as war correspondents for many years and through many wars, including the bloodiest war in American history: the Civil War. In the new book, All Out of Heart: A Journalist's Memoir of the Civil War (now available through 1stBooks), journalist Nicholas J. Canfield follows the Union Army in the days when journalists saw the more gruesome realities of war without special protection. Canfield first experiences the enormity of the conflict between the North and South as a newspaper editor in Baltimore. After his first taste of battle, he joins the New York Herald and becomes a correspondent, witnessing first-hand the bloody, smoky chaos of Civil War battlefields. The raw carnage in war parallels his inner struggles. Though Canfield's loyalties lie with the Union, his wife, a southerner, remains in the South throughout the war. Racked with shame at abandoning her, Canfield spends his free hours matching wits and numbing his loneliness with fellow correspondents in the saloon at Washington's Willard Hotel. Later, with General William T. Sherman on the March to the Sea, Canfield finds himself at desperate odds with a commander who despises journalists and has threatened to hang them. This captivating novel gives a unique perspective of the Civil War. From the fancy ballrooms of New York and Charleston, to the terror and confusion of the battlefield, Canfield details it all. Though the novel is based heavily on historical fact, the author is a fictional character, created by Jeanette Clinkunbroomer. "Because it seemed inappropriate to publish a memoir by someone other than the person who lived the experience and who tells the story, 'Nicholas J. Canfield' got the byline," she writes. Clinkunbroomer is a freelance writer based in Chicago. For more information, visit www.alloutofheart.com. All Out of Heart is a 6"x9" paperback, 362 pages, available from 1stBooks.com, Amazon.com, BN.com, and can be ordered through booksellers. ISBN #1-4107-4392-6. Distributed through Ingram.
Visit the book's web site at:
All Out of Heart: A Journalist's Memoir Of the Civil War by Nicholas J. Canfield. 1st Books, 2003. Pages: 362. Type: Fiction. Rating: R for language. Other Elements: PG-13 for violence and sexual topics. Reviewed by David Mackey Review: All Out of Heart is the account from a newspaperman's perspective of the events leading up to and including the American Civil War. To say simply that it is from a newspaperman's perspective is to gravely understate the matter. For this newspaperman, Nicholas Canfield also happens to hail from Maryland (a border and slave state), is originally from New York (with strong Union family) and has married into a Southern family (the Massines from South Carolina). Through this interesting mixture of origins and relationships the tale given in All Out of Heart hits at many of the issues and events of the war. It includes detailed accounts of life in Southern society before the war and how the issue of slavery and state's rights was dealt with. It includes interesting narrative concerning the actual events leading to secession (including the disbelief of many that the events would actually lead to war) as well as placing Canfield both at the Confederate's selection of Jefferson Davis as president and later the bombing of Fort Sumter. Canfield, while initially spending most of his time in the South (for his wife's sake) finds that his loyalties truly do lie with the Union and at Fort Sumter remains in the fort when the bombardment begins. This ostracizes him from his Southern family and sets him firmly in the books as a Yankee (and in some individual's minds, as a traitor). Following Fort Sumter Canfield becomes an army correspondent and is present at many of the battles of both the Eastern and Western theatres. At the beginning of the narrative we find him attending Eastern battles such as First Bull Run, Antietam, and Gettysburg while later in the narrative (after the fall of Vicksburg) he shifts to the Western theater and accompanies Sherman's army through its many battles all the way to Georgia and then into the Carolina's. The book closes shortly after the end of the war and details somewhat the after-effects of the war but closes before the tale of Reconstruction opens. This review's synopsis could now be closed but still would be dreadfully short for within this general synopsis above many areas have been skipped over in order to maintain unity. The author of All Out of Heart however uses no such mainstreamed approach to her writing, and I do not mean this in a negative way. Rather I am attempting to point out the intricacies which she wove into the text - beautifully, I might add. She includes descriptions of slavery, families being torn apart, and the ache of the casualties in the war. She places Canfield in a hospital for a period in order that we might become acquainted with the wartime prisons and takes time to remind us that all was not well in the North when the Emancipation Proclamation was released (focusing on the riots that took place in New York City). Concluding this synopsis now this review must now move on to the issue of whether this book is worth reading or whether it is a dud, as so many books are. My conclusion, in one sentence: This is an excellent work giving a general overview of the war. It suffers from an extremity of profanity, though not unusual to Civil War fiction. To expand upon that, let me say first on the positive: The work is masterfully written. The intertwining of stories, of the personality of Canfield and the stresses of the war is excellently done. The author hits topics right and left which might easily have been left out but add greatly to the narrative. She reminds me of the narratives of Jeff Shaara, which I also thoroughly enjoy. On the negative side however is the profanity. While she does not use some of the severest words in this work she does include the lesser words with great frequency and also includes numerous misuses of the Lord's name. However, as mentioned before, this seems to be somewhat normal among Civil War literature. Besides this there is also at the end an implied immoral relationship with some allusions to mature conversation. Parents should be especially considerate in their decision whether to allow their children/teens to read this work or not.
Previous authors of the "Best of the Civil War Group" post.
Don Waugaman, Bob Huddleston, Brooks D. Simpson, Steve Witmer, Robert Taubman, David A. Campbell, Nicholas Geovanis, Brian Hampton, Peter Bilbrough, Robert Brogan, Michael Mackinnon, Eric Calistri, Andrew McMichael, Bruce Henderson, Rich Rostrom, Hugh Lawson, Hawk, Joseph Eros, Juha Kallio, Dave Gorski, James W Bales, Scribe7716, foxwhiskers, David Spencer, Kris Overstreet, Osmo Ronkanen, Paul Wildenhain, Walt Appel, Gary Charbonneau, Jim Elbrecht, Daniel P. Duffy, Wesley Taylor, Katowskii, Jim Voege, Brad Meyer, James F. Epperson, William G. Davis, Pbwalther, HankC, mike stone, Michelle kosek, Aug, Joyce Green, Ed Frank, NCH, Carol Botteron, William Elliott, Dan McClory, Ken Rice, Dean B. Mahin, Trish Winston, Justin M. Sanders, Chris Smith, Tom Forehand, Paul J Hollander, n canfield, Geoff Blankenmeyer, Stewart Millen, Reg Pitts, Mark Jaeger, Jim McGarry, Jeremiah, Al Barnhard, Keith T. Childers, Son of Spam, Abraxus, NoName, Howard G Walker, Ed Jackson, Will Keene, Robert J. Kolker, Mark Grimsley, Stephen Graham, Rod Underwood, Kyri Freeman, David Heeding, Dave Balderston, mvillanu, W. Lydecker, Chuck Pinnegar, Drazen Kramaric, Mark Behrendt, Al Abaster, PLOSCONTI, Carolyn D., Beowulf2ooo, John A. Carnahan, specom, Dave Smith, Robert Willett, Linda Teasley, MLSRM, Charles M. Hagmaier, Douglas Henderson, "gatt", Kathy "KMP", Dave Welsh, Yaakov Macales, E. Carl Speros, Cash, Dan D. Cyr, Ed Sebesta, Jock Ewing, raymond o'hara, Historian, Joe Korber, John Rainbird Gentry, Christopher Morton, Jon G. Stephenson, "DT", JB Jewell, Bruce Trinque, "T. Beard", Bob Ruth, "Sgt. Pepper", R D Winthrop, Jack Maples, JDzik, Greg Heilers, Walter Miller, Harold Brooks, Pincus, Gregory E. Garland, Ron Andrews, Sam Pardue, Mike Lynaugh
|Dean B. Mahin||
One War at a Time:
The International Dimensions of the American Civil War,
The Blessed Place of Freedom: Europeans in Civil War America
|Brooks Simpson||His biography of Grant|
|James McPherson||What They Fought For|
|Eric Foner and Richard Zuczek||Reconstruction in South Carolina|
|Daniel W. Crofts||"Just how reluctant were the VirginiaConfederates, and what could Lincoln have done to keep Virginia in the Union?"--- Reluctant Confederates|
|William G. Piston||Lee's Tarnished Lieutenant: James Longstreet and His Place in Southern History|
Other Internet Civil War Discussion Groups
Geoff Blankenmeyer's page on the Pioneer Brigade.
James F. Epperson's site on The Causes of the War.
Various resources (no CW content) for options on cotton futures trading
Tim's Nutrition and Weightlifting Page
"Russian" Strength Program GeneratorPeter Knupfer on secession the 10th amendment and more. (1995)