Monday, November 14, 2011

Book Preview: The Last Confederate Battle by John Cline

History records that the last battle of the Civil War was fought on the red clay soil of the Rio Grande River at Palmito Ranch, near Brownsville, Texas. That battle took place in mid-May 1865, more than a month following General Lee’s surrender at Appomattox, Virginia. There are factual accounts of skirmishes that took place long after Lee’s surrender. The historical attention to detail is highly accurate giving the reader a front row seat to life before, during and after the Civil War.
The Last Confederate Battle brings to light the perspectives from both sides, revealing the positive and negative natures of men. Conflict within our own country is remarkably described through the writings of John Cline; the main characters of this multifaceted story come to life as real historical experiences are interwoven into each page.

Originally, my review of The Last Confederate Battle by John Cline was scheduled for today. I did not have time to complete the book yet, as during that week I lost power, I had very little reading time. Here I am going to provide my thoughts on what I have read so far, and then my full review will appear on December 22nd, hopefully earlier, if I get caught up on my reading.

The book opens with a Prologue that takes place in July 1865. After four years of war, Captain Andrew Jefferson Davis returns to Georgia to the land which once housed the Davis plantation. Foraging Union soldiers had set fire to the plantation's barns and fields, and tortured and killed Andy's wife and son. The book then travels back in time to when Andy was growing up with his brothers, Dwayne and Everett, before moving forward to the spring of 1857, then through the years of the Civil War and beyond.

I've enjoyed what I've read so far. The author is taking his time developing the characters, especially Andy. The cover art captures your attention with the prominent flag. I look forward  to reading more.

Following a twenty five year career in both the enlisted and officer corps’, John Cline retired from the U.S. Navy as a Limited Duty Officer (Mustang) in July 1993 with the rank of Lieutenant Commander. He was the director of the Idaho Bureau of Disaster Services until he retired in 2005.

He has a Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Workforce Education and Curriculum Development from Southern Illinois University, and a Master of Art degree (M.A.) in National Security Studies; Homeland Security and Defense from the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, CA. He is a graduate of the FBI National Academy (140th Session), and was nationally certified by the National Coordinating Council on Emergency Management and the International Association of Emergency Managers. He is an avid Amateur Radio Operator with the call sign W5USN. John and his wife Pat have three children and four grandchildren. 

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