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Gettysburg: The Last Invasion (Vintage Civil War Library)by Allen C. Guelzo
Synopses & Reviews
An Economist Best Book of the Year
A Kirkus Reviews Best Nonfiction Book of the Year
The Battle of Gettysburg has been written about at length and thoroughly dissected in terms of strategic importance, but never before has a book taken readers so close to the experience of the individual soldier.
Two-time Lincoln Prize winner Allen C. Guelzo shows us the face, the sights and the sounds of nineteenth-century combat: the stone walls and gunpowder clouds of Pickett’s Charge; the reason that the Army of Northern Virginia could be smelled before it could be seen; the march of thousands of men from the banks of the Rappahannock in Virginia to the Pennsylvania hills. What emerges is a previously untold story of army life in the Civil War: from the personal politics roiling the Union and Confederate officer ranks, to the peculiar character of artillery units. Through such scrutiny, one of history’s epic battles is given extraordinarily vivid new life.
“Graphic and emotionally affecting...an extraordinarily detailed and realistic account.” The New York Times Book Review
“This is a masterful battle study, masterfully told....Engaging....Guelzo’s narrative is enlivened by frequent use of accounts by battle participants, observers and Gettysburg civilians, and his descriptions sometimes rise almost to lyricism.” The Seattle Times
“[A] rich, original work....Guelzo’s book enlarges the conventional battle narrative....It’s his expansive, rolling storytelling that makes this book so engrossing and sets Guelzo’s Gettysburg apart from the many others....Through those pages runs a thoroughly readable description of every hour of those three hellish days, in enough detail to satisfy the keenest student of tactics and courage. Some good battle histories are crackling accounts of tactical moves and soldiers’ memories, stepping along as jauntily as a Sousa march. This one proceeds more like a stately symphony, solemn but enlivened by surprise digressions and meditations, taking its time, building to a finish that is familiar to all, yet seldom conducted so eloquently.” The Washington Post
About the Author
Allen C. Guelzo is the Henry R. Luce Professor of the Civil War Era and Director of Civil War Era Studies at Gettysburg College. He is the author of Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation: The End of Slavery in America and Abraham Lincoln: Redeemer President, both winners of the Lincoln Prize. Guelzo’s essays, reviews, and articles have appeared in publications ranging from the American Historical Review and Wilson Quarterly to newspapers such as The Philadelphia Inquirer and The Wall Street Journal.
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