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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"] 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
     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
    All Out of Heart is a 6"x9" paperback, 362 pages, available from,,, 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

      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
       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
         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

Transcripts of visits to the newsgroup by various authors.
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 Generator

Peter Knupfer on secession the 10th amendment and more. (1995)

Mark Grimsley discusses THE HARD HAND OF WAR

Tony Horwitz discusses CONFEDERATES IN THE ATTIC