- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: Polygon An Imprint of Birlinn Limited (6 Jun. 2013)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1846972663
- ISBN-13: 978-1846972669
- Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 2.8 x 19.8 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (95 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 76,125 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
The Killer Angels Paperback – 6 Jun 2013
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'My favourite historical novel ... A superb recreation of the Battle of Gettysburg, but its real importance is its insight into what the war was about, and what it meant.' --James M McPherson, author of Battle Cry of Freedom
'The best and most realistic historical novel about war I have ever read' --General H Norman Schwarzkopf
From the Inside Flap
"MY FAVORITE HISTORICAL NOVEL . . . A superb re-creation of the Battle of Gettysburg, but its real importance is its insight into what the war was about, and what it meant."
--James M. McPherson, Author of Battle Cry of Freedom
In the four most bloody and courageous days of our nation's history, two armies fought for two dreams. One dreamed of freedom, the other of a way of life.
Far more than rifles and bullets were carried into battle. There were memories. There were promises. There was love. And far more than men fell on those Pennsylvania fields. Shattered futures, forgotten innocence, and crippled beauty were also the casualties of war.
The Killer Angels is unique, sweeping, unforgettable--a dramatic re-creation of the battleground for America's destiny.
"REMARKABLE. . . A BOOK THAT CHANGED MY LIFE . . . I had never visited Gettysburg, knew almost nothing about that battle before I read the book, but here it all came alive."
--Ken Burns, Filmmaker, The Civil War --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
Killer Angels gives us the key players, the Confederate and Union Officers, that made the crucial decisions and/or had to carry them out. The story provides the reader with a sense of the professional and personal motivations behind their decisions and the interpersonal relationships that existed not just between officers in the same army, but relationships that had existed between officers on the opposing side.
Michael Shaara manages to provide a vivid account of the Battle of Gettysburg that never takes sides. He simply unfolds the three days and leaves his readers to witness the carnage that results. This is an extremely well written book which makes it a pleasure to read. The difficulty comes in managing the fact that this "story" is based on real events resulting in unimaginable human loss and devastation.
An excellent book...
However, a writer did, and oddly enough with fiction. Michael Shaara won a Pulitzer Prize for the moving work that focuses on the one pivotal battle, the high-water mark of the War Between the States. He gives you the frustration of men driven to kill their brothers, of the futility, the waste. Centring on Lee, floundering at the loss of his right hand Jackson, of being cut off from screening and blind without information because Stuart was on one of his glory rides, of one general who could not follow orders, of another, Longstreet, who followed them to the letter knowing he was sending his 'boys' to their death in the glorious, yet ultimately disastrous Pickett's charge.
But it through Col. J.L. Chamberlain where Shaara succeeds the most, in giving you the humanity, the nightmare, the pathos, of the men of 20th Maine regiment, volunteers who held the Union's left flank on the second day of the battle at Little Round Top.
The book is so moving, so touching that it makes you view the war in a way you never have before.Read more ›
Described as "a Novel" it takes real people and real events but spins them into a series of individual stories. While this might sound clumsy it works well and with the clear maps the reader has a good understanding of a dramatic story about which (if they are from the UK), they may know little. In fact a British reader may have the advantage over Americans in that the story is fresh and they wont know the outcome. For Americans the characters and stories are very well known.
Col. Freemantle, the real life British observer (though in fact he was basically a tourist) is well drawn without the caricatures or anti-Brtish bias sometimes seen.
The book formed the basis of the film Gettysburg which is also good though the acting and stick on beards (and its enormous length) make it more one for the enthusiast. (Also in the film Col. Freemantle becomes a red coated, tea drinking, toff.)
For many historians the main lesson to be drawn from Gettysburg is what happens when a general comes to believe that he and his army are unbeatable. The battle had its fair share of good and bad luck, and good and bad judgements, on both sides, but it seems clear that Robert E. Lee, Confederate commander and one of the best generals of the war, fought a battle he did not need to fight in a way that favoured the other side, and to all intents and purposes facilitated the Union victory.
The book reads well as a novel, as an account of men in battle, and as piece of history that seems to stick closely to the facts (though naturally not covering all of them).
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Easy to read, yet full of information, the battle described from start to finish from the viewpoint of the combatantsPublished 4 months ago by fs088121
Excellent well written account of the events and thoughts of the main figures involved in the major turning point in the American Civil War.Published 6 months ago by Adrian Walker
One of the most incredible books I have ever read.My daughter read it as part of her Uni deree, then lent it to "mum and dad" one of the most memorable and desperately sad... Read morePublished 8 months ago by old Bats
Excellent narrative that shows the point of view of the central characters of the battle, I have always been interested in the American civil war and this book has rekindled that... Read morePublished 9 months ago by benjamin beetson
Excellent narrative brought the whole 3 day battle alive. I had visited Gettysburg battlefield site many years ago and in conjunction with this book felt I was there. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer