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The Widow of the South Paperback – 1 Sep 2006

9 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 544 pages
  • Publisher: Black Swan (1 Sept. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0552773409
  • ISBN-13: 978-0552773409
  • Product Dimensions: 12.8 x 3.4 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 93,263 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

Review

"'It is a wonderful novel about what war does to its participants - not only the soldiers, but the families pulled from the periphery onto the battlefield. Hicks has perfected the art of mixing fact and fiction, and turned the book into a sustained, profound meditation on what it means to live, to love and to die. Congratulations to Robert Hicks - he has written a moving and magnificent novel'" (Tracy Chevalier, author of Girl with a Pearl Earring)

"A wonderful read. Blends the historical and the personal with a master stroyteller's skill" (San Francisco Chronicle)

"Written with lyrical beauty, arresting images as well as a compelling storyline" (People)

"Based on fact and meticulously researched, it is a moving novel. Robert Hicks is a superb storyteller." (Choice)

"'A sleeping giant'" (USA Today)

Book Description

An epic unrequited love story set against the madness of the American Civil War.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By sy on 16 April 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I enjoyed this book about the effects of the American Civil War as seen through a few characters and a specific event, the Battle of Franklin . The horror of the Battle of Franklin shows how most people were against this awful war........what a pity that more didn't protest and refuse to fight, a well-argued debate might have ended the war sooner !
There were aspects of the character of Carrie that surprised me, but I did not find her entirely sympathetic.
In all, it was an interesting and enlightening read, but I would choose carefully who I recommended it to.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Graceann Macleod on 15 Mar. 2009
Format: Paperback
Overall, this is enjoyable historical fiction about a figure in American Civil War history who should be better known - Carrie McGavock. Because of her, 1,481 men who fell in the battle of Franklin have a proper place of rest where they would have otherwise become part of some planter's field.

There are the bones of a great novel here; a flawed, enigmatic heroine, a home used as hospital and grounds used as final resting place, and all the conundrums, quandaries and questions that should go along with this scenario. Hicks misses a trick, I believe, by creating a fictional subplot that was unnecessary and distracting. Not only was it a waste of time and storytelling, it committed the mortal sin of being unbelievable. I love it when historical fiction plays with the story a bit (hence the word "fiction," for all those who have their undies in a bunch over the inaccuracies), but if it isn't written in a way that creates a plausible storyline, then that's the fault of the author.

Having said all that, I still enjoyed Widow of the South a great deal. Carrie, Mariah, John, Eli, and even Zachariah are tremendously interesting characters and I enjoyed sharing their lives. I just would have preferred less in the way of extraneous subplots and more concentration on the fascinating story that already exists, ripe for the picking.
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14 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Thewood on 2 Jun. 2006
Format: Paperback
This is not a novel to be compared to "Killer Angels", rather to be placed alongside it. The battle of Franklin is the backdrop only - the causal foil for the novel - Readers who enjoy well rounded and substantial characterisations will find themselves totally immersed in the wonderful tapestry of this novel. It is beautifully written and the writer demonstates a powerful empathy for each character, major or minor, yet he provides subtle observations of them and their world: all of which is carried along by a wonderful prose(which at times I found quite lyrical). It is not a novel about the American Civil War but of the Civil war - a testament to the human condition in adversity. A must read for everyone.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book opens with a gripping (and gritty) account of the Battle of Franklin - lots of varied focus and perspective; it slows down too much after that with the introspective wife of the house - whose frequent monologues about her lost children became repetitive and dull, so that I am afraid I rapidly lost interest. A pity. I've visited the battle field and hospital and it's a potentially stirring tale.
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Loved it have bought this copy for my daughter in law she lives in the US & is very keen on her American history
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