How would you feel if you were forced to go against your own friends and family simply because of belief differences? Beliefs so strong that you could possibly die or fight in war against one of them. This was a reality for the men in Michael Sahara's novel, "The Killer Angels."'I used to command those boys…Difficult thing to fight men you used to command…Swore an oath too…But…couldn't fight against home. Not against your own family. And yet…we broke the vow.' ” (p.191).Although I already knew what the outcome would be of the battle when I was done, this gave me a whole different view of it.The author provides an intense vision of what it was like to be there.
Shaara finds time, among the strategies and tactics, to offer some insights into the nature of men (Killer Angels) and war. He offers that the war was fought because of a clash in cultures and that the Union Army fought, not for prize or conquest, but to make a people free.'We are fighting for freedom from the rule of what is to us a foreign government.' (p. 65 & 66).But he also makes it clear that the Confederate leaders and soldiers also fought for their sense of freedom. The conflicts within men, who having vowed in happier times to never take arms against each other, yet in spite of that find themselves on opposite sides of a battlefield, adds feeling to an already emotional story.
This novel describes four days in Pennsylvania during the summer of 1863 in what many consider to be the turning point of the American Civil War. It was in July, that the North and South gathered near a small town called Gettysburg. General Robert E. Lee, leading a proud, unbeaten Confederate Army north into Pennsylvania in the hope of destroying the Union Army by stimulating it into an attack. It concludes with General Lee leading his battered forces on a retreat south to the safety of Virginia after